ORISSA HEALTH IMPERILLED BY PUBLIC SERVICE COMMISSION: RECRUITMENT FIXING SUSPECTED

Subhas Chandra Pattanayak

There is a vacancy of 148 teachers in the three Medical Colleges of Orissa, which has to be filled up urgently. Orissa Public Service Commission (OPSC), the statutory authority to conduct the selections, was asked by the state government to advertise the vacancies and to recommend candidates for appointment. Taking advantage of this, the OPSC has taken such steps that would imperil health education beyond correction.

Look at an instance involving the discipline of endocrinology. As per advertisement No. 4 of 2005-06, junior teachers numbering only 2 are to be recruited. The terms and condition for recruitment are that the candidates must be having super-specialty training in the subject and either in service as an assistant surgeon under the state government / a public undertaking or a lecturer in either of the three Medical Colleges for at least one year. In-service Doctors with the requisite qualification with lesser experience or no experience may be considered in case candidates with prescribed qualification are not available, the advertisement has indicated as a matter of routine practice.

The last date for receipt of application was 16 November 2005. Three Doctors had applied against the two vacancies. They are Dr. Arun Choudhury, Dr. P.K.Rathore and Dr. Prusti .The first two have been called for interview to be held on 20 December 2005. This means they have passed the screening and are held to have the requisite qualification. As only two vacancies are to be filled up, all of these two candidates selected by screening are supposed to be recommended for regular appointment by the state government after a couple of days to impart education in Endocrinology in Medical Colleges where Doctors will be prepared to address to a major area of health hazard in the State in the future, over and above treating the patients in the Hospitals of the Medical Colleges.

But like tender fixing going on in the State, the OPSC has become a center of fixing recruitments, it seems. I would not have inferred this had the screening of these candidates been proper. Only one of these candidates has requisite or equivalent to requisite qualification. He is Dr. Arun Choudhury. His bio-data reveals that he has obtained D. M. degree in Endocrinology from Mumbai, although the Medical Council of India does not recognize this degree. But the other one Dr. P.K.Rathore has no qualification that could be termed as requisite qualification. He has produced a certificate of training from a former Associate Professor in Endocrinology of M.K.C.G.Medical College, Berhampur, Dr. G.C.Nayak.

Our investigation reveals that this Medical College, at no point of time, had any training program or facility in the subject of Endocrinology. Dr. G.C.Nayak had never been appointed to run any super specialty training program on this subject. He has never been authorized by the Government or the University to issue a certificate of training in Endocrinology, which could be interpreted as a degree.

How the OPSC could accept this fraudulent certificate as a genuine degree and accepted it as an evidence of requisite qualification?

Here comes the question of recruitment fixing.

The wife of Dr. G.C.Nayak Dr. Priyatama Singh is a member of the OPSC. The husband issues a fraudulent certificate and the wife being a member, the OPSC passes this fraudulent certificate as a genuine degree while screening for primary selection on the basis of requisite qualification!

Any elaboration needed?

Ask the authorities and obtain their reaction if you feel that the health of the people of our State is more important than the Public Service Commission or its members or their husbands or wives or the Doctors or the commission agents.

Ask the OPSC to refrain from recommending people who have no requisite qualification to teach in Medical colleges. Ask the Minister of Health, the Secretary of Health to act to ensure that this fraud is not played on our people. Ask the Governor to intervene as the Chancellor of the University to initiate action against the Doctor who has facilitated fixing of recruitment by issuing a certificate of training when the concerned medical college had no legal or authorized program and entitlement to impart super specialty training in Endocrinology. Ask the Chief Minister to cause investigation to find out if any further such recruitment fixing has been done or is being done in the office of the OPSC.

This is urgent in interest of Orissa, where 69 per cent of the population is suffering from diabetics and other Endocrinological ailments. It is equally urgent in respect of other medical disciplines too as we must not allow frauds to take over medical education.

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