Slow probe for purchase of medicines at higher rates by J-K

Jammu and Kashmir government has ordered a probe into the purchase of medicines by the department of Indian System of Medicine (ISM) at exorbitant rates.

Written by Ishfaq Naseem | Jammu | Published: March 2, 2009 9:59 am

Jammu and Kashmir government has ordered a probe into the purchase of medicines by the department of Indian System of Medicine (ISM) at exorbitant rates.

Sources said that the health department has set up an enquiry committee for the purchase of medicines at higher rates by the ISM,last year. The committee which was constituted on 12 February this year was to submit its report within fifteen days to the government but sources said that the committee has not prepared its report as of now.

The departmental enquiry committee has been ordered into the purchase of Ashwagandharisht,Arjunarisht and Sitopladi Churan,at exorbitant rates by the ISM department in the year 2008-09. Sources said that the Chairman of the committee will be Special Secretary Health,while its other members are Financial Advisor Health and Medical Education Department,Deputy Secretary Health and Superintendent Government Medical College Srinagar. As per the government order,In-charge Assistant Medical Officer,Doda,has been asked to assist the committee in the enquiry.

Although sources said that the enquiry has been ordered against Director ISM,however officials said that it was not against any person and the probe was only looking into the complaints of ‘purchases made at higher rates.’

Commissioner Secretary Health,Atal Duloo,said “Officials have been asked to complete the enquiry report at the earliest. As such there is no prima-facie case against any official and we are probing the matter.

However sources said that the enquiry was ordered by the State government as the medicines were purchased from sub standard companies at the rates higher than the rates for the medicines from reputed companies. “The market rate for Ashwagandharist,which is a health tonic,is only Rs 40-50 for 450 ml. However the rates charged are over Rs 88. Also there has been bungling in the purchase of some other medicines. Even as the medicines available from the market of the companies like Himalaya,Zandu and Dabur are on lower side,the rates which have been charged from the other companies are more than the market rates,said,sources.

Sources said that even as the government has ordered the probe which came after it received the complaints,it is going slow on it. “Not all the officials who are the part of the enquiry committee received the enquiry orders on time which was the reason that the probe has already missed the deadline which was set by the government” sources said.

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