NHM employees continue strike, call on Health Minister

Excelsior Correspondent

JAMMU, Dec 30: While thousands of NHM Employees including employees from Revised National Tuberculosis Control Programme (RNTCP), J&K State AIDS Control Society (JKSAC) and other schemes of National Health Mission continued their strike on 11th consecutive day across the State, Health Minister Bali Bhagat today met with representatives of NHM employees and appealed them to call off their strike.
Hundreds of NHM employees demanding regularization of their services assembled today near Press Club Jammu as usual and raised slogans against the false promises made by the Government for framing a job policy for them.
Later on the invitation of Health Minister, the Joint Employees Coordination Committee of NHM, RNTCP, NACO and other schemes of Health Services met him in the office of Directorate of Health Services, Jammu. The meeting was also attended by Additional Secretary, Director Family Welfare J&K, Mission Director, NHM, J&K, Director Health Services, Jammu and other official of Health Department.
The meeting was conducted in smooth and conducive atmosphere but unfortunately nothing positive came out from the meeting despite the Minister apprised them that all their issues including regularization are under active consideration of the Government, and also gave assurances to provide some social security benefits to the employees but the employees refused to call off the strike on the verbal assurances of the Minister and sought written assurances.
“Since the launch of NHM Scheme in J&K in 2006, the State Government has failed to frame out a draft policy of regularization for NHM Employees whereas only verbal assurances were made in favour of them”, the NHM employees said, and toughening their stand, they threatened of State wide agitation, in case their genuine demand for regularization is not fulfilled.
The spokesman of the Joint Employees Coordination Committee Abdul Rauoof said that “Because of our hard work and dedication our State is being awarded No 1 State for Primary Health Services for last three consecutive years throughout the Country. “Now in return if employees are asking for their dividends why Government is showing cold shoulder and are acting as a dumb/mute spectator”, he added.