The Haryana health department, plagued with acute shortage of doctors, has again hit a roadblock in its recent recruitment drive.
During the selection process from February to May for 434 doctors, only 150-odd medical officers were found to be eligible, of which just 71 joined service after three months of their appointment, senior officials of the department told Hindustan Times.
The category-wise break-up of 434 posts was 103 from the general, 191 from Scheduled Castes (SC), 12 from backward classes (BC), 78 from ex-servicemen's (ESM) or dependent-ESM category and 50 from physically handicap (PH). Against this, only 23 SC, 12 BC, 11 ESM, 3 DESM and 3 PH candidates applied and found eligible. All of them were selected.
The recruitment drive had witnessed poor response in the past as well, officials said, adding that in the latest drive, only 152 doctors were found eligible and their joining process was in progress.
Move to de-reserve quota vacancies
There are 2,556 sanctioned posts of medical officials in the Haryana Civil Medical Service cadre, out of which nearly 280 reserved for SC, ESM and PH candidates are lying vacant for the past more than four years.
This in spite of efforts by the departmental high-power selection committee that have been undertaking recruitment drives after taking the post of medical officers out of the purview of the Haryana Public Service Commission.
"The reason for less people from reserved categories applying for the posts is that only Haryana domiciles are eligible to apply, as the list of SCs, BCs and other categories is different for each state. We have started de-reserving seats for candidates from the general category," a senior official said, adding that another problem afflicting the department was "high rate of attrition resulting into resignations, pre-mature retirements and superannuation".
Officers said the department had initiated the process to de-reserve 215 vacant posts of medical officers meant for the SC and PH categories. The government had, however, allowed to fill 50% of the posts belonging to the ESM category from the general category by relaxing instructions, they said.