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3 children die at Karachi’s NICH as healthcare Providers continue to strike

KARACHI: On Tuesday, three patients died at the National Institute of Child Health (NICH) as medical professionals kept up their boycott of Sindh’s health services and the police arrested a large number of nurses and paramedics who were attempting to march on the Chief Minister’s residence.

As a result of the standoff between the police and protesters, Dr. Ziauddin Ahmed Road and other nearby roads leading to the CM House were closed, causing a traffic snarl.

According to sources, a large group of medical professionals united under the Grand Health Alliance (GHA) gathered in front of the Karachi Press Club early in the day to chant slogans in support of their demands.

Later, they made their way to the Sindh Secretariat and staged a sit-in there.

However, some of the protesters tried to move in the direction of the CM House, forcing the police to step in, according to SSP-South Syed Asad Raza.

Five female nurses who were arrested by the police were later released. The police intervened and detained about 15 protesters. He added that senior health officials were in negotiations with GHA protesters standing in for young doctors, paramedics, nurses, and other health workers and that it was likely that the 10 male protesters would be released soon.

However, Dr. Faizan Memon of the Young Doctors Association, a member of the GHA alliance, claimed that so far, no fruitful results had come from the discussions with the government representatives.

“Young doctors and paramedics have been protesting for more than a month, but the government hasn’t shown any interest in our sincere demands.

The Sindh Cabinet has met twice during this time, but our demands were not discussed at either meeting.

Dr. Memon emphasised that the Covid-19 risk allowance was the main demand, which the government had been withholding for the past month.

“Creating openings for dentists is another demand. Despite the fact that more than 5,000 dentists are unemployed, the Sindh government has not announced any openings for positions in the last 15 years.

The protesters also demanded a promotion policy and changes to the service structure.

Pavan Manzoor
Written By

Pavan Manzoor is an experienced content writer , editor and social media handler along with a track record of youth-oriented activities in Pakistan and abroad. She was selected as a fully-funded delegate as a leadership fellow in Turkey. She also led a team of 5 volunteers at the week-long Young Professionals Fellowship in Maldives. She is also a member of the Youth Standing Committee on Higher Education.

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