Protesting what they called the gross apathy of the state government towards fulfilment of their long-standing demands, more than 2,400 pharmacists, under the banner of Odisha Pharmacists’ Service Association (OPSA), launched their indefinite cease work with a demonstration near the State Assembly here today.
Addressing the rally, general secretary of the Association Sudhanshu Sekhar Pati said; “Though a high-level committee, chaired by chief minister Naveen Patnaik, had assured the Association on July 3, 2010 that our salaries would be revised, no steps have been taken in this regard till date.”
The pharmacists have been demanding revised salary and creation of at least 2,500 pharmacist posts in the state.
Slamming the dilly-dallying attitude of the state government, Pati said three high level meetings under the chairmanship of the chief secretary were held in April and October, 2012 and in January this year to discuss the demands of the Association. The former Health minister also had a meeting with the Association in June 2011 and January 2012. But nothing tangible has come up yet, he said.
He also said that the Association had decided to go on mass leave on July 22 this year, but postponed it following the assurance by the Health director to fulfil the demands.
“We do not trust this government anymore. This time, we have decided to continue our agitation until our demands are met”, Pati said.