Mangaluru, Jan 29, 2016: State Health and Family Welfare Minister UT Khader has taken strong exception to the indefinite strike launched by the 108 Arogya Kavacha ambulance employees and assured that all measures would be taken to ensure that the strike does not affect the public.
Speaking to reporters at Circuit House on January 29, Friday, Khader said it has been gathered that GVK company which manages the ambulances was making the staff work for 12 hours but paid only for 8 hours work. Earlier when the employees went on strike, I had assured to make the additional payment by January 1, Khader said adding sanction of Rs 6.64 crore was possible only on January 14 as the chief secretary was earlier on leave. He also alleged that the employees of Arogya Kavacha had gone to the press and threatened a strike despite knowing that the funds have been released. The minister also stated that many staff have got their pending payment provided they agreed to abide by some conditions that they should wear white coats and shun using ambulance for personal purposes. A few who have not agreed to the same have not received their cheques and are now creating confusion, the minister said.
He also claimed that most staff are on duty and in some cases KSRTC drivers have been deputed. On the alarm raised over Zika virus, the minister said as of now there is no such threat in the state.
To a question if the Yettinahole Project would dent the party’s prospects in the upcoming Zilla and Taluk Panchayat elections, the minister said in fact the BJP would be affected as it was the BJP which gave a go ahead to the project.