Updated: July 6, 2022 7:18:53 am
Even as the BJP-led government in Uttar Pradesh has completed 100 days of its second term in office, a stand-off between Deputy Chief Minister Brajesh Pathak and Additional Chief Secretary, Medical and Health, Amit Mohan Prasad over transfer of doctors has come to the fore.
Sources in the government said Pathak, who also has the medical and health portfolio, was unhappy that a transfer list of doctors was released while he was away for the BJP national executive meeting in Hyderabad. On his return, he wrote to Additional Chief Secretary Prasad, pointing out that it has come to his knowledge that “due procedure was not followed for transfer of doctors across the state.”
Sources said Prasad replied to the minister’s letter, informing him that due procedure has been followed in these transfers, which are usually carried out by the end of June every year. Incidentally, Amit Mohan Prasad was also heading the health department amid the Covid-19 pandemic when Pathak raised questions on the functioning of the department.
The face-off came to the fore when Pathak’s letter to Prasad, dated July 4, became public.
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In his letter, Pathak wrote in Hindi, “It has come to my knowledge that whatever transfers have taken place in the current session, the transfer policy has not been completely followed. Thus, provide complete details of all those who have been transferred along with reasons for their transfer.”
He added, “I have been informed that in districts including Lucknow, where there is a need for specialist doctors in big hospitals, they have been shifted but no substitute has been appointed in their place. Lucknow is the state capital, where there is already a shortage of specialist doctors and patients in serious condition are referred from other districts to Lucknow as well for better treatment. “
Pathak also sought details of arrangements made for smooth functioning of medical services following transfer of doctors “in such large numbers from significant and big hospitals in Lucknow.”
This is not the first time that Pathak has raised questions about the functioning of the health department in the state: He had done so amid the Covid-19 pandemic too. He was Law Minister then.
While Pathak and Prasad could not be contacted on Tuesday, senior officials in the government also refused to comment on the matter.
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