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Shailendra Singh vs The State Of Madhya Pradesh on 3 June, 2021

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IN THE HIGH COURT OF JUDICATURE FOR MADHYA PRADESH,
BENCH AT INDORE

WP No. 1882/2014 (PIL)
(Shailendra Singh Vs. State of M. P. others)
-1-

Indore, dated 3/6/2021

Heard through Video Conferencing.

Shri Pranay Choubey learned counsel for the petitioner.

Shri Purushendra Kaurav learned Advocate General for the

respondent / State.

Shri Rishi Shrivastava learned counsel for JUDA MP, Indore.

Shri Siddharth R. Gupta learned counsel for JUDA Jabalpur

and Gwalior.

This matter has been listed for hearing on IA No. 5469/2021

filed by the petitioner Shailendra Singh with the prayer that

members of Junior Doctors Association (for short, “JUDA”) of

Government Medical Colleges in the entire State of Madhya

Pradesh and other Associations or Unions of Doctors/Medical

Officers/ Nurses/Medical Staff, should be restrained from

continuing with the strike and that direction be given to the State

Government to initiate appropriate action against the erring

directors under the Essential Services Maintenance Act, National

Disaster Management Act and the Medical Council (Professional

Conduct, Etiquette and Ethics) Regulations 2002. It is also prayed
IN THE HIGH COURT OF JUDICATURE FOR MADHYA PRADESH,
BENCH AT INDORE

WP No. 1882/2014 (PIL)
(Shailendra Singh Vs. State of M. P. others)
-2-

that action be taken against the members of Junior Doctors

Association who have by proceeding on strike committed contempt

of the orders passed by this Court on 31/1/2014 and 25/7/2018

whereby this Court restrained all the medical officers attached to

Government Hospitals and Government Medical Colleges in the

State of Madhya Pradesh from proceeding on strike.

We have heard Shri Pranay Choubey learned counsel for

petitioner and Shri Purushendra Kaurav learned Advocate General

for the State. We have also heard Shri Rishi Shrivastava, who

appeared for Junior Doctor Association of M.P. and Shri Sidharth

R. Gupta, who appeared for Junior Doctor Association, Jabalpur

and Gwalior.

Shri Pranay Choubey, learned counsel for petitioner has

submitted that members of Junior Doctors Association, who are

students of post graduation study course in various branches of

medicine have abstained from work w.e.f. 31 of May 2021,

demanding increase in their stipend. It is contended that members

of JUDA have stopped providing services to the patients in the

Covid Wards. As a result of their strike, the emergency services in
IN THE HIGH COURT OF JUDICATURE FOR MADHYA PRADESH,
BENCH AT INDORE

WP No. 1882/2014 (PIL)
(Shailendra Singh Vs. State of M. P. others)
-3-

all type of hospitals have been shut down. Even though Essential

Services Maintenance Act has been imposed against the striking

doctors but the government has so far not taken any disciplinary

action against them. The newspaper clippings of leading news

papers regarding strike have been placed on record.

Shri Rishi Shrivastava and Shri Siddharth R. Gupta, learned

counsel for the striking doctors argued that the first demand of the

Junior Doctors is for increase in the amount of stipend which is

static for past many years ranging from Rs.55,000/- to Rs.59,000/-.

It has been argued that 17 States in the Country have already

increased the stipend during the covid period as high as Rs.85,000/-

and that the Junior Doctors Association is having all the documents

to substantiate this. Therefore, the government ought to consider

the demand of the resident doctors in the right earnest. It is

contended that the Chief Secretary of Madhya Pradesh in 2018

gave the assurance to them that their stipend shall be increased by

6% but nothing happened thereafter. It is submitted that a meeting

was convened between the representatives of JUDA and the Health

Minister of the State on 6th May 2021 in which again assurance was
IN THE HIGH COURT OF JUDICATURE FOR MADHYA PRADESH,
BENCH AT INDORE

WP No. 1882/2014 (PIL)
(Shailendra Singh Vs. State of M. P. others)
-4-

given by the Health Minister to positively consider increasing the

stipend payable to the members of JUDA, but till date this has not

been acted upon.

It is submitted that second demand of the junior doctors is

that they should be provided adequate security at the work place as

in certain incidents they were subjected to not only misbehaviour

but also beating by the attendants and family members of the

patients in various government hospitals. It is also submitted that

third demand of the junior doctors is that since many of them have

been infected with corona virus, resulting in their family members

also getting infected. Therefore, their demand is that if they and

their family members are infected with corona virus, they should be

provided free of cost treatment in the same hospital where they are

working. Their fourth demand is that the medical colleges should

waive the fee for the period of extension of the study course of post

graduation and diploma over and above the period of three years.

And fifth demand is that 10% additional/extra marks given to the

P.G. students who are rendering their services in rural/ remote/

difficult areas, should also be given to resident doctors giving their
IN THE HIGH COURT OF JUDICATURE FOR MADHYA PRADESH,
BENCH AT INDORE

WP No. 1882/2014 (PIL)
(Shailendra Singh Vs. State of M. P. others)
-5-

services in the Covid ward of the hospitals by treating such duty at

par therewith.

Shri Purushendra Kaurav, learned Advocate General

submitted that the resident doctors by proceeding on strike have

committed contempt of the order of this Court passed on 25 th July

2018 whereby they were restrained from doing so. It is contended

that the state government may consider their demand only if they

first call off the strike and resume the duty. Without resumption of

duty, they cannot be invited for negotiations. The learned Advocate

General has submitted that as far as safety of junior doctors at the

work place is concerned, the government is already conscious of

the same and is making adequate arrangements and will further

examine what additional measures can be taken in that behalf.

Moreover, the government is ready to provide treatment to junior

doctors and their family members if they get infected while

discharging their duties in Covid ward of the hospitals. As regards

the fee for the extended period of study course, learned Advocate

General submitted that no such demands has been made.

This court on 25/01/2018, when the members of JUDA had
IN THE HIGH COURT OF JUDICATURE FOR MADHYA PRADESH,
BENCH AT INDORE

WP No. 1882/2014 (PIL)
(Shailendra Singh Vs. State of M. P. others)
-6-

then given a call for strike, required the petitioner to implead the

said association party respondent. Learned counsel for the

petitioner submitted that since pursuant to the aforesaid order

passed by this Court the strike was called off, required application

for impleadment was not filed. The petitioner has today filed an

application IA No.5492/2021 for impleadment of the JUDA.

Application is allowed. The Junior Doctor Association is impleaded

as party respondent through its President Dr. Arvind Meena.

We tried to persuade the office bearers of the Association Dr.

Arvind Meena, President, JUDA, Dr. Pradip Patel, Vice President

JUDA, Rai Sen Tanwar, Treasurer of JUDA and Dr. Anshul Chawle

officer bearer of JUDA, who appeared before us through video

conferencing, to immediately call off the strike so that the

respondent State may be required to start negotiation with them but

without any success.

Despite persuasion by this Court and efforts made by Shri

Rishi Shrivastava the learned counsel and Shri Sidharth R. Gupta,

learned counsel appearing for the JUDA, the striking doctors are

not prepared to call off the strike. The office bearers of JUDA are
IN THE HIGH COURT OF JUDICATURE FOR MADHYA PRADESH,
BENCH AT INDORE

WP No. 1882/2014 (PIL)
(Shailendra Singh Vs. State of M. P. others)
-7-

insisting that they would enter into dialogue with the Government

only when their demands are met.

All doctors have a solemn duty towards humanity. This duty

binds them to serve the citizens suffering from any kind of disease.

In the present scenario, this duty requires them to join hands with

all fellow citizen in fight against the ongoing pandemic of

Coronavirus. We shall do well to reproduce the declaration in the

form of oath given by the doctors when they entered profession, as

per the Indian Medical Council (Professional Conduct, Etiquette

and Ethics) Regulations, 2002 which reads as follows:-

“I solemnly pledge myself to consecrate any life to
service of humanity.

Even under threat, I will not use my medical
knowledge to the laws of Humanity.

I will maintain the utmost respect for human life
from the time of conception.

I will not permit considerations of religion,
nationality, race, party politics or social standing to
intervene between my duty and my patient.
I will practice my profession with conscience and dignity.
The health of my patient will be my first consideration.
I will respect the secrets which are confined in me.
I will give to my teachers the respect and gratitude which
is their due.

I will maintain by all means in my power, the honour and
noble traditions of medical profession.
I will treat my colleagues with all respect and dignity.

IN THE HIGH COURT OF JUDICATURE FOR MADHYA PRADESH,
BENCH AT INDORE

WP No. 1882/2014 (PIL)
(Shailendra Singh Vs. State of M. P. others)
-8-

I shall abide by the code of medical ethics as enunciated
in the Indian Medical Council (Professional Conduct,
Etiquette and Ethics) Regulations, 2002.”

Clearly, in this crucial phase of our lives when whole of the

country is grappling with the deadly menace of Covid-19 following

its second wave, the striking doctors have completely forgotten the

solemn oath taken by them in the above extracted declaration. We

quite appreciate that they have suffered hardship and rendered

duties at odd hours at the cost of their health. But at the same time

it is also equally true that they have chosen a wholly inappropriate

time to press for their demands, howsoever reasonable they may be,

by proceeding on strike.

Their advocates Shri Rishi Shrivastava and Shri Sidharth R.

Gupta requested for a pass over, so as to try to persuade them to

immediately call off the strike and enter negotiation with the high

powered committee that may be formed by this Court. We passed

over the matter to enable them to do so. Matter was then called out

in second round. The office bearers of JUDA however remained

steadfast in their approach and maintained that strike shall be called
IN THE HIGH COURT OF JUDICATURE FOR MADHYA PRADESH,
BENCH AT INDORE

WP No. 1882/2014 (PIL)
(Shailendra Singh Vs. State of M. P. others)
-9-

off only when their demands are met. We cannot appreciate this

stubborn attitude and condemn their action in proceeding on strike

at such a critical juncture when almost entire nation is struggling to

survive the second wave of Corona virus, which has engulfed

several hundred human lives in different parts of the country.

Faced with this situation, we declare the strike by junior

doctors as illegal and direct them to immediately resume their

duties. If they do so, a high powered committee consisting of the

Chief Secretary of the State, Additional Chief Secretary, Medical

and Health and the Commissioner, Medical Education shall

immediately call them for negotiation. If they fail to do so within

24 hours, it would be open for the government to take any legal

action against them as it may deem fit in accordance with law.

List the matter again on 07.06.2021 to see the further

progress.

(MOHAMMAD RAFIQ) (SUJOY PAUL)
CHIEF JUSTICE V. JUDGE
BDJ

Digitally signed by
BHUVNESHWAR DATT
JOSHI
Date: 2021.06.03
22:35:59 +05’30’

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