NHM employees’ strike leads to chaos in far flung areas
Srinagar: Hopeful that their demands will be met soon, the National Health Mission (NHM) Employees are continuing with their strike in the state, with patient care in the far-flung areas taking a hit as the government has, so far, given a cold shoulder to the striking employees demands.
The striking employees held protest demonstrations in Jammu as well as in Srinagar on Tuesday, demanding regularization of their services along with other demands that were promised to them.
Spokesperson, NHM Employees’ Association, Abdul Rouf told ‘Kashmir Vision’ from Jammu that nothing has happened so far, but the association was hopeful of a breakthrough soon.
“We have been continuing with our protests and strike since January 23, but so far, nothing has happened,” he said, while adding that the representatives of the association will be meeting the Principal Health and Medical Education, AtalDullo in coming days.
“We will be meeting the Principal Secretary in couple of days, and we are hopeful that something will come out of the meeting and our demands will be met,” he said.
In Srinagar, the employees assembled at Srinagar’s Pratap Park Tuesday afternoon demanding urgent action with regard to their demands.
The employees said that at least 8000 employees working under NHM are being forced to face hardships as the authorities “have so far failed to fulfill their demands.”
A doctor, who is posted at a Public Health Centre (PHC) Ganderbal district, said that recently the government appointed 900 doctors but 500 among them didn’t join their duties.
“Why doesn’t the government regularize the NHM doctors instead of those 500 doctors who failed to join their duties,” he said.
“The NHM employees are serving the department with dedication and honesty but it is unfortunate that the government has failed to fulfill their demands,” he added.
“The Association has repeatedly represented to the authorities in last one year but there has been no headway. So much so, the authorities have even failed to fulfill our demands which involved no financial implications,” Rouf said.
Notably, earlier in 2018, the NHM employees, while seeking attention of the government towards their demands, had observed a 35-day strike, which ended up after the government and the employees jotted down an agreement, however, the agreement has so far been limited to paper.
Also, the Principal Secretary Health and Medical Education had told this newspaper that regarding the regularization of NHM employees, only Centre can take a call, “as most of the funds under NHM come from it,” he had said.
Meanwhile, Mission Director, NHM Bhupender Kumar and Principal Secretary Health and Medical Education AtalDullo did not respond to repeated calls from this reporter.