Employees of the 108 emergency services, under the Meghalaya Emergency Management and Research Institute Workers’ Union (MEMRIWU), served a one-week deadline for the state government to call for talks.
The contract between the government and GVK EMRI, the private firm that runs the 108 ambulance service, ended today and the MEMRIWU is insistent that the government take over the service.
“We want to send a clear message that we no longer want the 108 emergency services to be privatized or persist under the GVK EMRI management but that it should be taken over by the state government, union leader M Syiemlieh said.
The problems besetting EMRI were raised in the Assembly during the recent budget session by the opposition.
According to the union, EMRI workers are overstretched and underpaid, with the service suffering from a shortage of staff and ambulances.