CM Office Intervenes, Nurses Put off Strike in State

High Court

Nurses in Kerala to go on strike from Monday

The United Nurses Association (UNA) and Indian Nurses Association said they would intensify their protest from July 17. The court pointed out that Section 3 (1) of the Kerala Essential Services Maintenance Act (ESMA), 1974, conferred on the State government the power to prohibit strike in any essential services if it was satisfied that it was necessary to do so in public interest.

On Friday, the Kerala High Court restrained the nurses' organizations from holding the indefinite stir, based on a petition filed by association of private hospitals.

The indefinite strike announced by the nurses of private hospitals from Monday has been called off, after the CMO offered to have a discussion with them.

UNA state president Jasmine Shah told the media that they were ready to face action but they won't withdraw the decision to strike.

Private hospital managements made it clear that they would have to scale down their services and limit themselves to providing emergency care if nurses go ahead with their agitation. "About 70% of the people in the state depend on medium hospitals, which are mostly functioning in semi-urban and rural areas", said Thangal.

They held the view that meeting the main demand of the nurses, i.e.to increase the basic pay to Rs 20,000, is not possible. "We had not faced such a crisis in the past five years", said Dr Harish Pillai, president of the Association of Healthcare Providers of India - Kerala.

The other day, a group of major hospitals in the state under the Association of Healthcare Providers India had chose to limit their services from Monday in the wake of the indefinite strike called by the nurses. "The wage revision will see a doubling of salary of the nurses".

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