Police detain 35 dental surgeons protesting for jobs in Jammu

Jammu, Feb 14: At least 35 dental doctors were detained Monday after they staged a protest here in support of their demand for jobs by creating new posts of dental surgeons in hospitals across Jammu and Kashmir, police said.

The protesters, both men and women, assembled under the banner of Dental Surgeons Association J&K at Dogra chowk and tried to block the vital Tawi bridge near the statue of Maharaja Hari Singh when police moved in and detained them, the police officials said.

General Secretary of the association, Robin Tikoo said their employment woes have not been addressed since 2008 when the government last officially advertised posts for dental surgeons in the health department.

He said thousands of dental doctors are unemployed across the Union Territory and more than 500 of them have already crossed the age limit without facing the J&K Public Service Commission examination even once.

“We reject the financial assistance scheme announced by the Lt Governor administration for the dental doctors to set up their own clinics. We do not need the financial assistance offered by the government but a proper job. For financial assistance, we can go to a bank,” he said.

He said the government has announced a loan of Rs 8 lakh with a condition that the clinic should have two dental surgeons and one technician.

“Many of us are still repaying the education loan and it is not possible for us to set up a private clinic with another bank loan,” the doctor said.

Tickoo claimed the association has given several representations to the authorities time and again but nothing has been done till date for their welfare.

He said the association appeals to the Lt Governor to take note of their plight and address their issues without any further delay.–(PTI)