Bhopal Memorial Hospital Trust shuts down

July 2, 2005
On Saturday, management decided to shut down Bhopal Memorial Hospital & Research Center situated in Karond. This decision is in response to the 3 day strike by junior doctors and other staff members. The decision of the trust will impact more than 5,00,000 gas victims who received free treatment from the hospital.
With the help of police, the management of the trust discharged all the admitted patients in the evening. Police force was present within the premises of the hospital till night. The management has not taken any decision regarding the functioning of 8 mini units of BMHRC.
The 350 bed hospital goes through at least 30-35 operations, and 350-400 outpatients visit the hospital on a daily basis. The hospital has special facilities for Bypass surgery, Engiography, Cardiology Cardiac Thoracic Surgery, Nephrology Medicine, Cancer Surgery, Pulmonay medicine, Gastrology, Neurosurgery, Mental Health and Eye.
The working trustee of the trust Aziz Ahmed Siddiqui stated ignoring the interest of the gas victims a few doctors and employees of the hospital are on strike. The management has had discussion with the doctors and other employees, but they are intransigent over payment to central government salaries. The interest on the corpus fund is what is used for payment of salaries to employees and for taking care of patients. The trust has suffered losses of Crores of rupees because this year there has been excess expenditure on treatment of gas victims and on employees. Mr. Siddiqui claims that the hospital pays more salaries than any other hospital in Bhopal and it is treating gas victims free of cost. He said that the strike was illegal because before going on strike the doctors and employees gave no notice. The striking staff members are asking for a raise in their salaries, and it is not possible for trust to pay such high salaries because trust doesn’t have any other income.
Strike will continue
The spokesperson of Resident Doctors Union, Mr Salim Nayak said that managment has put up a notice in the hospital informing all employees that they have to vacate the campus by the evening of 4-July. He said that the employees will not bow before the dictatorship of the management. The striking doctors ran a parallel OPD and treated patients as well as participated in a sit-in. Meanwhile convener Bhopal Gas Peedith Mahila Udyog Sangathan, Mr. Abdul Jabbar has said that the decision to close down the hospital is shameful. The Sangathan will file a special writ petition in the Supreme Court of India on July 4-2005.
Bhopal Memorial Closed, Patients asked to leave. Management tells doctors and employees to vacate the campus.
The management of Bhopal Memorial Hospital that was built for treatment of 575,000 survivors of the disaster decided to close down the hospital this evening. This decision was taken in the context of the 3 day old strike of the doctors and employees. The hospital management asked 123 patients admitted to the hospital, to leave. Police men were present when patients were told to go. Doctors and employees residing within the campus have been asked to vacate the campus by July 4
Notice posted on the hospital
2nd July 2005
Consequent upon failure of talks between the management and employees on strike on account of their unreasonable demands, the management is left with no alternative but to reluctantly close Bhopal Memorial Hospital Trust and Research Center at Karond for the time being.
The employees on strike are therefore given two days time to vacate the hospital premises by 4th July 2005 before 5:00 pm.
The management efforts to persuade the employees to work in the larger interest of the gas victims and to allow time for the management to evaluate their demands have failed because of the unrelenting attitude of the employees on strike. This unpleasant and unfortunate decision has been forced by the management.
Director General
BMHRC

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