KOCHI: The functioning of the MOSC Medical College at Kolenchery came to a standstill on Saturday after more than 600 nurses of the hospital launched an indefinite strike. The nurses have decided to resort to strike after a prolonged discussion, held between the hospital management and the nurses union and mediated by the labour commission, failed to reach a solution. The nurses union at the Medical Hospital under the All India Nurses Welfare Association had given a 15-day ultimatum to the Hospital Management with a list of 19 demands, including salary hike and reduction of working hours.
The deadline ended on January 26, following which the labour commission initiated talks between the management and the nurses union. But the talks remained inconclusive.
“They did not accept our demands. So we have decided to go on an indefinite strike. We had demanded that the minimum salary be increased to Rs 18,000 from, which is as low as Rs 3,100 now. All patients admitted to the hospital were informed about the development,” said Robince Ittan, committee member of the nurses union of the Kolenchery Medical hospital.
Meanwhile, the hospital alleged that the Union was not ready to make any compromises.
“Out of the 19 demands they had put forth, the hospital agreed to 18 in the presence of the labour commission. We requested for a 10-day period to look into their 19th demand; increasing the salary of Assistant Staff to `18,000. But they rejected our request,” said Bijoy Thomas, Human Resource Manager, MOSC Medical College.