The Madhya Pradesh high court has stayed the appointment of the Indore civil surgeon till further hearing and issued notices to top health officials as to why seniority was ignored in the appointment, said plaintiff’s lawyer Nilesh Agrawal on Saturday.
Complainant Ratan Khandelwal was given a temporary charge of the post in August after Satish Trivedi was suspended in January.
However, in October, Hemant Dwivedi was appointed as a full-fledged civil surgeon, allegedly superseding Khandelwal.
Following this Khandelwal moved the high court challenging the appointment of Dwivedi on October 14. On October 16, the court stayed the appointment till the next hearing, which Agrawal said was to be held next week.
He said certified copies of the notices would be handed to the principal secretary health, joint director health Indore, commissioner and chief medical, asking why the seniority was ignored.
Agarwal said the appointment of Dwivedi was in violation of the health department circular which “mentions the rule of seniority be followed for the appointment of civil surgeon.”
The post has remained in controversy since January when Satish Trivedi was suspended by the principal secretary on charges of his incompetence to handle hospital affairs and Dilip Acharya was appointed in his place on January 9.
Acharya, however, went on medical leave for two months after an accident. In August, Ratan Khandelwal was appointed as an ad hoc arrangement. However, sources said Dwivedi was appointed as the civil surgeon while Khandelwal was away in Hyderabad.
Department sources said the post of civil surgeon was filled through the principle of merit-cum -seniority. The post is crucial as the person in charge is responsible for district hospital affairs, chief medical health officer SK Porwal said.
Joint director health Sharad Pandit said, “I haven’t received anything from the court. Moreover, the job of appointment doesn’t lie with me so I cannot comment on why he was not considered for the post.”