High Court asks Govt. to Implement Apex Court Order on Nurses’ Wages

The Delhi High Court on Monday asked the city government to implement the Supreme Court directions & recommendations of an expert panel regarding the wages & working conditions of nurses employed in private hospitals of the Capital.

A Bench of Chief Justice D.N. Patel & Justice C. Hari Shankar issued the direction to the Delhi government while hearing pleas by two nurse associations.

The associations demanded the implementation of the Central government-appointed panel’s recommendations on the minimum wages & working conditions of nurses in private hospitals.

Minimum wage
The panel, set up by the Central government on the apex court’s direction, had recommended a minimum wage of ₹20,000 for nurses working in establishments with less than 50 beds.

It had also suggested that their working conditions, like leave, working hours, medical facilities, transportation & accommodation, should be on par with the nurses working in government hospitals.

Delhi government’s additional standing counsel Sanjoy Ghose said that in June last year, all the private hospitals & nursing homes in the national capital were directed to comply with the panel’s recommendations.

However, the Delhi government’s order was challenged by several private hospitals & associations representing them, who contended that paying the enhanced wages to the nurses would make their business “unviable”.

Without consultation
The private hospitals had told the Bench that the Delhi government took the decision in this regard without consulting them.

The Bench observed that nothing much was required to be done except implement the apex court’s direction & the committee’s recommendations.

It then directed the Delhi government to do so “in accordance with law & policy as early as possible & practicable”.

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