The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has again asked the PGIMER administration to take action against the institute’s Medical Superintendent Dr Anil Kumar Gupta for allegedly “disobeying the ministry orders” and continuing a three-month-long assignment with the World Health Organisation (WHO) in Nepal in 2014.
In December last year, the PGI administration was directed by the ministry to initiate action against Dr Gupta for “disobeying” the ministry orders regarding the WHO trip. Ministry sources said after the directions, the PGI had sent the file back to the ministry seeking some “clarification”.
On Saturday, a ministry official told Chandigarh Newsline that the file had been sent to PGI again. “We recently received the file from the PGI seeking some clarification. We have sent it back and have issued directions that regular departmental proceedings may be initiated,” the official said.
The official asserted that the next step had to be taken by the PGI administration. “Nothing has to be done by the ministry. We have already issued directions,” he said.
The case dates back to 2014 when Dr Gupta went to Nepal on a WHO assignment for three months. During a meeting of the PGI governing body, the then health minister Harsh Vardhan had expressed surprise as to how Gupta could take long leave without the consent of the governing body.
In the letter sent to PGI in December, the ministry had said that Dr Gupta continued the assignment “in spite of the then health minister’s disapproval”. It directed that “regular departmental proceedings” might be initiated against Gupta in the matter.
Dr Gupta has been maintaining that he went abroad on the permission of the PGI director, who is the “competent authority”. Dr Gupta, when contacted on Saturday, refused to comment on the issue.
PGI PRO Manju Wadwalkar said, “I have no information about the case.”