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Ambulance employees threaten agitation

Dhubri, Oct. 9: The All Assam 108 Mrityunjoy Employees’ Association has threatened to launch a bigger agitation from February if its seven-point charter of demands was not met.

Their seven-point charter includes regularisation of their service and salary on par with government employees, declaring Mrityunjoy service as permanent and turning it into a 24-hour service, construction of 100 shelters for employees, eight-hour duty for employees (at present they work 12 hours), increase in number of employees and insurance with legal aid.

The president of the employees’ association, Lakhi Kanta Roy, said they had held discussions on their demands with the management but they remained non-committal on their salary structure but had assured to look into other demands before the next budget.

Sources in the association said around 1,700 employees were appointed under public-private partnership a few years ago.

Over 280 emergency ambulances have been deployed under the project across Assam.

However, the employees feel there is a vast gap between their salary and that of the government staff.

Various other problems faced by the employees have been brought to the notice of GVK EMRI, which manages the service but they were yet to be addressed, sources said.

“We are being exploited as employees on medical duty have to render health services at any cost but we receive less pay. So, we will wait till the next budget and if the management does not fulfil our demands, we will launch an agitation from February,” Roy said.