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PG Medical students’ protest for increase in stipend has enetered ints 7th day today even as Kerala Government refuses to comply or comment. Students are also seeking help by induction of junior doctors for covid duty.

  • PG Medical Students in Kerala have been protesting for 7 days now, with no revert from the Government.
  • Among other things, the students are demanding a 4% increase in the stipend paid out to the students in PG Medical colleges.
  • Recently the government also allegedly increased the course fee, which has added to the burden on the students.

Protest by doctors in Kerala entered Day 7 today as the Government has still not agreed to the demands. The postgraduate doctors have been asking the Government to fulfil its demand of increasing the stipend paid to doctors by 4%. Apart from this, the protesting PG medical students are also asking the government to induct Junior doctors for COVID duty, in order to reduce the piling workload.

Speaking to our reporters, the protesting doctors shared that the Kerala Government is reluctant to give a 4% increase in stipend, even when it has increased the fee of the PG course. As per the information shared, a PG student would now have to pay about Rs. 65,000 per annum as the fee. The course fee has been increased from Rs. 52,000 to Rs. 53,000.

Students are also protesting the lack of consideration shown by the government, in regards manpower planning and Covid incentives. The doctors shared that they have been demanding Junior doctors be given covid duty to ease up the workload on the PG students.

“So many states gave COVID incentives as a token of appreciation for healthcare professionals. The states with lower stipends than Kerala actually have a lower course fee and those states also gave COVID bonuses for the selfless dedicated work of junior doctors,” shared Anchitra, a PG Doctor.

As for the stipend, postgraduate doctors get a stipend as high as Rs. 1,00,000 per month in Delhi and Central Institutes and as low as Rs. 45,000 per month in states like Himachal Pradesh and Andhra Pradesh. The course fee, however, is said to be on the lower side as well. Apart from the higher stipend, doctors also have been given incentives and bonuses for the work done.

For instance, in Gujarat the stipend was increased to Rs. 87,500 during COVID times. They were also given a one time incentive of Rs. 25,000. Stipend in Haryana is at Rs. 85,000 while in UP and Rajasthan it is in the range of 70 to 80 thousand. Rajasthan Government also gave incentives in the range of 50 to 60 thousand to PG students – claimed protestors. Maharashtra Government, where stipend is 55 thousand, also reportedly gave an incentive of Rs. 1.2 lakh to the resident doctors on Covid duty.

Many other states including Karnataka and West Bengal increased the stipend. Karnataka added Rs. 10,000 in the monthly stipend payout while West Bengal increased the stipend to about Rs. 60K a month.

Citing more such examples, students shared instances of Assam and Tamil Nadu which offer lower or at par stipend but have much less fee course. Assam, for instance, is said to pay a stipend of Rs. 50K while the course fee is just Rs. 25K for three years. In comparison, Kerala PG medical education fee is at Rs. 65K per annum and the current limit of stipend is at Rs. 52,000.

Government officials were not available for comment at the moment. Students in Kerala, however, continue with their protest and reluctant to call of the protest without action on their demands.

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