Ensure dues of health staff cleared within a week: SC to govt
The Supreme Court on Friday directed the Centre to take steps to ensure that pending salaries of doctors and healthcare workers engaged in Covid-19 duties are cleared within a week.
The court’s direction came while hearing an application filed by the United Residents and Doctors Association (URDA) that pointed out instances of healthcare staff being denied wages for coronavirus disease-related relief work in Maharashtra, Punjab, Tripura, Karnataka and Delhi.
The bench of Justices Ashok Bhushan, R Subhash Reddy and MR Shah said, “Appropriate steps in this regard shall be taken by the Central Government to ensure that salaries of doctors and health workers are released.” The court gave Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, who was appearing for the Centre, a week’s time to make sure the necessary steps were taken.
On June 17, the top court had directed the Centre to issue orders to all states and Union Territories for payment of salaries to doctors and healthcare workers as also for providing suitable quarantine facilities for those who are directly engaged in treatment of Covid-19 patients.
Advocate Mithu Jain who filed the application on behalf of the URDA also pointed out that several hospitals were forcing doctors to apply for casual leave against the days they were in mandatory quarantine.
“How can that be done. It is compulsory quarantine. It should not be considered as leave,” the apex court bench said.
Solicitor General Mehta assured that necessary instruction would be conveyed in this regard and they would be reported to the court by August 10, the next date of hearing.