After taking suo moto cognisance of the matter, the Delhi High Court has issued a directive to North DMC to pay salaries of resident doctors of Kasturba Hospital and Hindu Rao Hospital which have been pending since March 2020.
The directive was issued to the Central government, Delhi government and North Delhi Municipal Corporation and other respondents by a division bench comprising of Justice DN Patel and Prateek Jalan.
The court had taken suo moto cognisance of the news reports published in various media outlets about the non-payment of salaries to the doctors. The reports claimed that more than 300 doctors in two MCD hospitals, Hindu Rao Hospital and Kasturba Hospital, were threatening to resign en masse or go on a mass strike on account of not being paid for the last three months.
The North DMC, in its response, stated that the salaries of the resident doctors i.e Junior Residents, Senior Residents and PG Doctors in MCD hospitals since March 2020 because of lack of funds. According to the information provided by the North DMC, the total liability under the head of the salary of residents of all six North DMC hospitals– Hindu Rao Hospital, Kasturba Hospital, Rajendra Babu Institute of Pulmonary Medicine and Tuberculosis Hospital, Maharishi Valmiki in Infections Diseases Hospital, Mrs Girdhar Lal Maternity Hospital and Balak Ram Hospital stands at Rs 8 crore per month.
Furthermore, the North DMC cited financial constraints as a reason for non-payment of salaries to various employees, including Safai Karamcharis; Maalis, Drivers etc.
On the other hand, ASG Sanjay Jain contended that the Delhi government has already paid the payable amount to the North DMC in May. However, he added that the government was willing to release additional funds to the North DMC to be paid for the aforesaid doctors by June 18, 2020.
After Delhi Government’s submission, the court ordered North DMC to utilise the amount provided for the payment of pending salaries for April 2020, directing them to not retain the remunerations unnecessarily.