Nurses postpone strike until PM’s return from KSA
Agitating nurses today postponed their ongoing strike until Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina returns from her visit to Saudi Arabia.
The nurses have postponed the strike with a hope that they would come to a solution after meeting with the premier on her return, Nahida Akhter, a spokesperson for Bangladesh Basic Graduate Nurses' Society (BBGNS), told The Daily Star.
Several hundred nurses under the banner of Unemployed Diploma Nurses Association and Bangladesh Basic Graduate Nurses' Society (BBGNS) have been demonstrating since early April, protesting a March 28 Public Service Commission circular on recruitment of 3,616 senior nurses at public hospitals.
The circular said applicants must be below 36 and have Bachelor of Science degree or diploma in nursing to be eligible for taking the recruitment test.
The recruitment exam for the nurses was held yesterday amid boycotts by the two nurses associations that had been protesting the new recruitment system through the Public Service Commission (PSC).
“Huge number of candidates appeared in the exam. I thank the PSC for holding the exam peacefully and also the administration and law enforcers,” Health Minister Mohammed Nasim said at a press conference at his Dhanmondi residence yesterday.
Nurses associations, who demonstrated against the exam at the Dhaka Medical College Hospital campus yesterday, however, estimate only 35 percent of the total 18,063 applicants has appeared for it, and demanded the exam to be scrapped.
Earlier on June 1, at least 50 nurses were injured in a clash with police while trying to enter the health minister's Dhanmondi residence in the capital to press for their demand for revising the nurses' recruitment process.