The Punjab and Haryana high court on Tuesday issued notice of motion to the Punjab government on a petition seeking removal of 22 district health officers (DHOs) from the post of designated officers under the Food Safety and Standards Act, 2006.
The development took place during the hearing of a petition filed by Ludhiana resident Kuldip Singh Khaira.
The court was informed that designated officers, unless appointed on whole-time basis, could not do justice to their jobs, as they had been conferred vast powers and functions pertaining to grant and cancellation of licenses and to impose huge penalties. But the new legislation was enacted for curbing substandard and adulterated food practices and giving additional charge of designated officers to DHOs was defeating its purpose.
It was alleged that DHOs were usurpers for the post of designated officers, as they were not entitled to hold this post under the statutory rules, and were thus, liable to be removed.
The case would now come up for hearing on April 25.