The Statewide strike called by the Kerala Medical Post-Graduate Association (KMPGA) was total at the Kottayam Government Medical College. However, Medical College authorities said the service at the medical college hospital was not affected on account of the resident doctors’ strike.
The junior resident doctors had given notice for the strike. However, the senior resident doctors too joined them in Thursday’s strike. The PG students had been demanding hike in their monthly stipend which they said was among the lowest in the country. While the national average stood at Rs.34,000 per month, the resident doctors in Kerala got only Rs.23,965. On the contrary, the annual tuition fee at Rs. 51,700 was among the highest, they had pointed out.
They are also demanding better accommodation for the resident doctors, lower working hours and filling of teacher vacancies in Government Medical Colleges, among other things.
The Medical PG doctors had resorted to observance of a Black Day on January 29 before taking up a two-hour token strike on June 7 as a mark of protest against the government apathy in implementing their demands. The KMPGA leaders said they would be forced to resort to an indefinite strike if the government continued with its apathetic attitude.