The Maharashtra government’s order of outsourcing hirings for 1,749 of the 4,500 nurses in the state has created a stir. Nursing students protested against the order, claiming that it was unfair to them. On Monday, nurses stopped working at government hospitals and medical colleges from 7.30 am until 8.30 am. They plan to continue protesting until their demands are met.
The Directorate of Medical Education and Research (DMER) currently has 4500 vacancies for nurses. According to the new order of business, 1,749 of these vacant seats will be filled with outsourcing nurses from a private company.
The government nurses are opposed to the decision and have offered their support to stop the alleged privatization of the hiring process. The protesting students claim that the private agency hires candidates who are ready to work at low salaries and not give the job to most deserving people. Hiring by a private firm can lead to exploitation of the nurses.
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The state government passed a resolution allowing the contracting of nurses through a private agency. The nursing students and association were not happy with the decision and decided to protest the state-wide move. They even threatened an indefinite strike starting Saturday if they don’t get rid of the new order.
DMER has held a series of meetings with the nursing organization and appealed to them for a halt to the strike. They also promised that permanent employment will be possible soon. DMER has yet to make an official statement about the withdrawal of its order.
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Students will also need to pass NEET in order to be admitted to nursing programs. NEET was previously only required for MBBS and BDS programs.
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