Govt’s gift to an ‘absconding’ doctor


Suspended doctor reinstated and promoted as DTO

Srinagar: A doctor who was suspended for his conspicuous absence from his duty for more than 7 months in the Sub-District Hospital Kulgam where he was posted as Block Medical Officer has surprisingly been reinstated within days after returning from Gulf District Tuberculosis Officer (DTO) for South Kashmir’s Anantnag district.

Departmental sources stated that Dr Ashfaq Aalam had gone to a Gulf Country where according to them he was engaged with a foreign Pharmaceutical Company. “He was then BMO Yaripora Kulgam when he went on an unauthorized leave. The protests from patients against his absence from the hospital forced  the Directorate of Health Services to place him under suspension in January this year.”

Surprisingly, the moment the  doctor in contention returned to the  Valley after finishing his contract with the Gulf pharmaceutical company, he was posted as DTO despite the fact, he had been placed under suspension and an inquiry committee probing his conspicuous absence from the duty had not submitted its report yet.

Dr Ashfaq Alam, who is a chest specialist, before moving to Gulf was attached to Chief Medical Officer’s Office Anantnag last year, when during his tenure as BMO Achabal, his role in embezzlement of large chunk of money was established by an internal Departmental enquiry committee. “Within a span of two months only, the tainted BMO managed to get himself deputed as BMO Yaripora. Only the higher authorities then knew what prompted them to post him as BMO Yaripora, even after it was established that he embezzled a large chunk of funds,” said a doctor  on condition of anonymity. Even the then BMO Yaripora and Director Health Services had appealed to then Commissioner Secretary Health to take stringent action against the said doctor.

Sources said that the said doctor has close relations with a political leader of ruling party and it was on his behest, Dr Ishfaq has been reinstated and promoted.

Health Minister Lal Singh was not available for comments. However, Director Health Services Kashmir ,Dr Samir Matoo said that Government might have issued an order in this regard. “I will check it out and see on what basis he was reinstated and posted as DTO Anantnag,” he said.

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