The newly constituted five-member panel, tasked with shortlisting some names for the post of AIIMS director, will meet on January 9, sources said on Thursday. “The newly constituted search-cum-selection committee was scheduled to meet on January 6. But it has been postponed to January 9,” source at AIIMS said. Apart from Health Secretary C K Mishra, who is the chairperson of the panel, the committee comprises Prime Minister’s Principal Scientific Adviser R Chidambaram, secretary in Department of Health Research Soumya Swaminathan, Director General of Health Services Jagdish Prasad and Vice Chancellor of Delhi University Yogesh Tyagi.
“The committee will shortlist a few names, which will then have to be approved by the Institute Body before being sent to the Appointments Committee of the Cabinet (ACC) headed by the Prime Minister for final approval,” a senior official at the premier medical institute said.
Last month, AIIMS had recommended a search-cum-selection committee headed by Union Health Minister J P Nadda which was rejected by the DoPT. The Prime Minister’s Office then ordered reconstitution of the search panel based on DoPT guidelines amid allegations of nepotism against some members of the committee.
According to sources, 53 eminent doctors, including 35 candidates from outside AIIMS, have applied for the Director’s post and the screening of applications is complete. The main contenders for the top post include, Dr V K Paul, head of the department (HOD) of paediatrics, Dr Randeep Guleria, HOD of Pulmonary Medicine and Sleep Disorders, Dr Alka Kriplani, HOD of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Dr A B Dey, HOD of Geriatric Medicine, and AIIMS medical superintendent Dr D K Sharma.
The outside candidates include KGMU Chancellor Dr Ravi Kant, ex-director of AIIMS, Rishikesh Dr Rajkumar, Director of JIPMER Dr Subhash Chandra Parija and Dr Rasik Vajpayee, the nephew of former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee, sources said. A few doctors, based abroad, have also applied for the post.
Current AIIMS Director Dr M C Mishra is set to retire on January 31.