The intern doctors in government hospitals in Gujarat, who were on strike for the past three days, ended their protests after having discussions with the state government on Wednesday, Deputy Chief Minister Nitin Patel said.

The interns were demaning a hike in their monthly stipend from Rs 12,800 to Rs 20,000.

The Deputy CM, who also holds the health portfolio, said, “I had said earlier that first the interns should end their strike and thereafter we will decide. A delegation of interns from different medical colleges in the state led by Vadodara city BJP president Vijay Shah met me and we had a detailed discussion for about one-and-a-half hours. They understood my suggestions and have decided to end their strike unconditionally.”

“Shortly, we will have discussions with the Principal Secretary, Health and Family Welfare, the Health Commissioner and other medical services officials and thereafter we will call the representatives of the interns and take an appropriate decision on their issues and demands,” added Patel.

“Today, we had discussions at length with Deputy CM Nitin Patel and we have been given the assurance that all our issues will be solved within 2-3 days, provided we first end our strike. Accordingly, we are announcing the end of our strike,” said a representative of the striking interns.

The Deputy CM had termed the interns’ strike as illegal and had asked all the deans of the medical colleges and the medical superintendents of government hospitals to treat the intern doctors who had gone on strike as absent from work.

Patel had dubbed the strike as a pressure tactic, saying, “This is unacceptable. It is mandatory for every medical student to complete the nine-month internship post MBBS and on completion, the student gets the certificate for medical practice.”

The MBBS intern students had submitted representations demanding hike in their stipend to their respective deans. The doctors had expressed that their repeated demands to increase the stipend had been ignored by the health authorities.

–IANS

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