The government doctors on Thursday decided not to go on strike after being given in-principle approval to some of their demands and assurance of sympathetic consideration of their other demands by the government.
The earlier decision of the doctors to proceed on an indefinite strike from Friday has now been taken back. "The meeting between the Haryana government with doctors of HCMSA was held in a congenial environment. After the consensus reached on various issues between the government and the doctors in the meeting, all the doctors decided to withdraw the agitation," an official statement said after the meeting here.
An official spokesperson said the government welcomes the decision of the doctors. “Doctors have a very crucial role to play in society, especially in the current Covid crisis and the government is committed to their welfare,” the spokesperson said.
A delegation of doctors met Additional Chief Secretary (Health) Rajeev Arora, in which state's Director General of Health Services, Dr Veena Singh, too was present. Among other issues, it was decided that a decision on the issue of direct recruitment of senior medical officers, which the doctors have been opposing, will be finalised in one week.
Earlier on January 11, health services in government hospitals in Haryana were hit as doctors had suspended OPD work in support of their demands, prompting the authorities to declare their stir as illegal by invoking the Essential Services Maintenance Act. The doctors are also demanding the creation of specialist cadres for them and stopping the direct recruitment of senior medical officers.
The government had acceded to one of the key demands of the doctors with Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar on Tuesday giving in-principle approval to the creation of specialist cadre post for MD or MS doctors. The doctors will also not be given any administrative work and will practice in their concerned speciality only.
Regarding in-principle approval to the creation of specialist cadre posts for MD and MS doctors, an official statement had earlier said, "In-principle approval has been granted today wherein the government will create a special sub cadre for specialists who will be designated as a consultant or senior consultants."
Earlier, a doctor with MBBS qualification and MD/MS qualification used to be in the same cadre. Health Minister Anil Vij had on Tuesday tweeted, "ESMA has been invoked in Haryana, now for six months health workers won't be able to go on strike. This step has been taken as a group of doctors has gone on strike which is creating obstacles in steps being taken to contain the Covid surge." The Essential Services Maintenance Act (ESMA) allows the government to declare a strike illegal in the public interest.
With inputs from PTI.