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Indefinite hunger strike at Mumbai's KEM hospital lasts nine hours

Around 1,000 employees demanded better bonuses, ID cards and payment of arrears etc; they called off protest, after the authorities assured their demands would be looked into

The employees of KEM Hospital, including clerks, ward boys, and cleaners, staged a hunger strike in front of the dean’s office on Thursday morning.

The strike began at 7.30 am and was called off at 4 pm. No patients were affected. File picThe strike began at 7.30 am and was called off at 4 pm. No patients were affected. File pic

However, after a lengthy meeting with the dean, Dr Sandhya Kamath, they decided to call off their indefinite strike in the evening, after they were assured their demands would be looked into.

Their demands
Around 1,000 employees had called for a strike on Wednesday, to voice their grievances about basic needs like no uniforms, bonuses and arrears being held back for the last few years, no ID cards for Class III and Class IV workers and vacant living quarters in the premises not being filled.

During the four-hour meeting, following the protests of BMC employees of the Parel hospital, the authorities were able to convince them to resume their work.

According to the employees, they were assured that not only would their demands be looked into, but its implementation would also be done at the earliest.

Mahesh Dalvi, Secretary of Municipal Mazdoor Union said, “We started the hunger strike at 7.30 am and around 11 am we were called for a meeting.

It went on till 4 pm where the authorities accepted our demands and gave us their word that it will be fulfilled at the earliest.”

A nurse from the hospital said, “The discussion ended on a positive note, therefore we called off the strike. The nurses from the second shift were working and patients were not affected.”

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