New Delhi:Only patients and no staff could be seen inside a ward at Delhi’s AIIMS hospital, the country’s top medical facility, as nurses went on an indefinite strike citing a long list of demands including clarity on salary structure and a freeze on hiring on contract.
The photo of a deserted AIIMS ward, widely shared online, reflected a frightening reality in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Director of All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) today made an emotional appeal to the hospital’s 5,000-strong nursing staff, which declared the strike in the afternoon.
“I am very proud of the AIIMS family for the tremendous work done during the COVID-19… the nation is proud. Unfortunately, at this time of pandemic, the nurses’ union has gone on strike,” AIIMS Director Prof Randeep Guleria said in a video message to the AIIMS Nurses Union.
“The nurses’ union had put in 23 demands. Almost all the demands have been met by the AIIMS administration and the government,” Mr Guleria said.
He evoked Florence Nightingale, with the WHO marking her 200th birth anniversary by naming the year 2020 “The International Year Of The Nurse and The Midwife”.
“This year we celebrate 200 years of Florence Nightingale, the lady with the lamp, who worked tirelessly. Today we look at the nurses to work tirelessly for those who suffered during the pandemic,” he said.
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