Govt assures nurses’ to meet demands, strike withdrawn

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Dhaka, May 1: The government on Sunday assured the agitating unemployed nurses’ demands of recruiting them on the basis of batch and seniority as same as it was in the past and being received the assurance the nurses suspended their programme.

A meeting was held between Health Minister Mohammad Nasim and leaders of two unemployed nurses’ organisations at minister’s Dhanmondi residence on Sunday morning.

Nurses have been on a sit-in protest in front of the National Press Club in Dhaka since the early last month.

Health Minister Mohammad Nasim ending nurses’ fast-unto-death by feeding water to BDBNA leader Faruk HossainNurses rejoicing after hearing the decission of the government

“Our representatives held a meeting with the health minister and the secretary, where we were assured that our demands would be met. So we have decided to suspend our agitation,” Diploma Nurses Association’s Secretary General Faruk Hossain told reporters.

After the meeting, President of the BDBNA Rina Akhter said that the circulation of Public Service Commission (PSC) would be cancelled within a couple of days.

Besides, the unemployed nurses withdrew their strike following an assurance from the government of meeting their demands.

Vice-president of Bangladesh Basic Graduate Nurses Society Mukul Hossain also said that they decided to call off their strike as Health Minister Mohammad Nasim assured them that nurses will be recruited on the basis of batch and seniority as was in the past.

A five-member delegation of Bangladesh Diploma Unemployed (Bekar) Nurses Association and Bangladesh Basic Graduate Nurses Society met the minister at his Dhanmondi residence, said Parikshit Chowdhury, senior information officer of the ministry.

During the meeting, Nasim told the nurse delegation that the ministry will consider their demands from humanitarian grounds, he said.

Several hundred nurses had been staging demonstrations across the country after Public Service Commission (PSC) issued a circular on March 28 seeking to recruit 3,616 senior nurses through examinations.

The demands include recruiting nurses to public hospitals as per seniority instead of any entry test, filling up of 10,000 new posts of nurses and 3,728 vacant ones as early as possible and the recruitment of 89 percent vacant posts with nurses having diploma degree and the rest 11 percent with nurses having BSc nursing degree.

Amid the demonstrations on March 28, nurses blocked the capital’s Shahbagh intersection when police had to disperse them.

Since April 4, the nurses went on a nonstop sit-in protest in front of Dhaka’s press club. Some of them went for hunger strike in the last four days.

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