Stating that the state government is exploring all possibilities to meet the demands of the All Manipur Health Services Doctors’ Association (AMHSDA), Manipur Health Minister S Ranjan on Friday appealed to the doctors working under the state government to refrain from taking up any sort of strike.
The minister was replying to a calling attention motion raised by MLA Kh Joykishan, on the floor of the House on the probable resumption of strike by AMHSDA, relying on the report published by the Imphal Free Press.
ALSO READ: Manipur government doctors threaten to resume strike
The doctors demanded time bound promotion, extension of superannuation age of specialist and non-specialist doctors to 65 years, inclusion of NPA in the basic pay with effect from January 1 of 2016 as per 7th central pay commission and major amendments of outdated MHS Rules 1982.
While calling the attention, Joykishan pointed out the consequences and the panicking situation to be faced by all sections of people if doctors of the state went on strike.
Informing that the government considers the demands seriously, the minister stated that the time bound promotion has been followed since the past but with linkage to vacancy.
Pointing out that the special grades (I and II) post is confined to limited numbers as it is an administrative post, he explained that if promotion for the special grades is given without vacancy, the Health Department will face a big administrative crisis in the future.
At present, there are altogether 470 eligible employees for promotion but there are only 232 vacancies and a screening process is going on to mend the vacancy, he said.
ALSO READ: Civil bodies shut down Tamenglong district hospital over shortage of doctors
If there is any vacancy, the government gives promotion to the eligible, he said, citing the recent promotion of four grade II employees of the department to grade I officers.
Ranjan further informed that the government is also exploring the possibility to give a one-time relaxation promotion for all grade IV offices eligible for grade III by consultation with the Finance and Personnel departments.
Regarding the increase of superannuation age to 65 years, he said there is lack of feasibility as the specialist doctors will be working under their juniors. Besides, there are more than 1,000 unemployed doctors in the state, he said, adding. “We also need to think about the young unemployed doctors”.
Regarding the 7th Pay, Ranjan informed that the request had been referred to the Finance department for consideration, adding as all the decisions cannot be taken in haste.