Pay Equal Stipend to RGUHS Private Medical College MBBS Interns: National Students Union writes to Education Minister
Bangalore: Pointing out the huge disparity in pay to the MBBS interns at the government medical colleges and those studying at the private ones, the National Students' Union of India (NSUI) recently approached the Karnataka Government seeking its intervention regarding the matter.
In a letter addressed to Dr. K Sudhakar, the Minister of Medical Education of Karnataka, NSUI pointed out how doctors and health-care workers have served the nation while "putting their own lives at risk". "While these warriors are leading the battle from the front, the least we can do is to ensure that they get the basic remuneration that they deserve," added the letter.
Referring to the disparity in the payment made to the MBBS interns at Government and Private medical colleges in the State, the letter pointed towards the well-thought decision of the state government to offer grace marks and financial incentives to the final year M.B.B.S students for serving on covid duty. However, the association sought the authorities attention to the fact that the private medical colleges are not paying sufficient stipend to the final year M.B.B.S students who serving as interns.
"The students of these colleges have been used as machine to make money and have been subjected to high degree of exploitation. This attitude of these private institutions will have to set correct through an immediate intervention from the government," further added the letter signed by Sanjay Raj, NSUI in-charge, Rajiv Gandhi University of Health Sciences (RGUHS).
He urged the Government to "take immediate measures to regulate the stipend paid to the interns at the private medical colleges and also extend the covid duty incentives to them."
The MBBS interns pursuing their education at the Government medical colleges of the State get an amount of Rs 30,000 per month as a stipend. In fact, during the peak of COVID, another Rs 10,000 was given to those interns as incentives.
However, in comparison, the interns belonging to the private medical colleges sometimes get an amount of Rs 500, Rs 2,000 or sometimes nothing at all, informed Sanjay Raj.
He also informed that currently there are around 52 private medical colleges and 36 private dental colleges in Karnataka and pointed out how the interns at those colleges are deprived of their basic right, stipend for their service.
Speaking to Medical Dialogues regarding the matter, he said, "We have been raising this issue for the last one year. Recently, we submitted a representation before the Government. Now, the Government of Karnataka and the Medical Education ministry should interfere and solve this issue. However, there hasn't been any response yet."
"These interns at the private medical and dental colleges, they work for the same amount of time, from morning to evening. Unfortunately, they are not even paid the minimum required amount. All we are asking is that there should be a regulation regarding this and the interns at the private institutes should be paid at least a basic amount," added Raj.
"Previously when the students had protested, Sudhakar sir had warned the private medical colleges to pay the amount. But it was orally said and nothing is on pen and paper yet," he added.
When asked about their future plans to get what they are demanding, "For now, we have submitted the representation. However, if this continues, we might have to plan a big protest all over Karnataka."