Unfazed by the Madhya Pradesh High Court observation in which the court asked the striking junior doctors to return to work within 24 hours, the Junior Doctors Association announced to continue the strike and handed en masse resignations to their respective medical colleges on Thursday.
Nearly 3,000 junior doctors in Madhya Pradesh since Monday struck work, barring Covid-19 duties, to press for their demands, including free treatment for them and their families if they contract the Covid-19 infection. The association has around 3,000 junior doctors in six government medical colleges of the State.
On Thursday, the high court while hearing a petition called the strike in Covid-19 times unconstitutional and asked the JDA members to return to work within the next 24 hours.
The physicians’ role is more important in Covid-19 times and striking work isn't proper in such a crucial time, the HC had observed while hearing a pending petition. The State government had told the HC that most of their demands were agreed upon still the association wasn't withdrawing the strike.
The doctors said that they will move the Supreme Court against the HC decision and medical teachers will also join their stir shortly. The JDA State head Dr Arvind Meena claimed that they are eager to end the strike but the government hasn't contacted them for a dialogue in the last four days. He alleged that administration was resorting to bullying junior doctors with harsh measures.
The association is demanding a stipend hike, reservation of beds for JDA members and their kin for the Covid-19 treatment, incentives for the Covid-19 duty and so on.
Recently the JDA had withdrawn their strike call after assurance from the Medical Education Minister Vishwas Sarang. BJP State Secretary Rajneesh Agrawal claimed that the government has considered most of their demands from the JDA and claimed that doctors were not adhering to ethical duties in the pandemic by being adamant on strike call
(inputs Pratik Mohan Awasthi)