With the Allahabad high court setting the August 29 deadline, the UP health and family welfare department is in a fix over granting prosecution sanction against 34 medical officers named in the NRHM scam to the CBI.
Though the central bureau of investigation has sought permission to prosecute the accused officers on May 27, the department had managed to keep it pending for over 90 days on one or the other pretext.
The reason behind the dillydallying attitude of the department is the “influential status’ of the accused.
However, with the Lucknow bench of Allahabad High Court asking the state to either grant or refuse permission by August 29, the government is left with no choice.
“The high court order has left the department with little option and prosecution order might be granted within a few days,” confided a health department officer.
Sources said the law department, which was approached by the state for opinion, has also approved the prosecution of doctors.
Earlier, the government had also referred the matter to the advocate general (AG). The opinion of the AG is still awaited. And if the sources are to be believed, these “influential accused” want that the department to use the pending opinion of AG as a ground to seek more time from the court.
It may be mentioned that the CBI had named 22 government doctors as accused in the multicrore NRHM scam that took place in the BSP regime. Later, more names were added in the list of accused.
When SP came to power, health and family welfare minister Ahmed Hasan had promised to cooperate with the CBI in getting the guilty officials punished. It had also suspended all the doctors named in the scam.
However, it kept the prosecution sanction pending. This forced the high court to ask the government to either refuse or grant permission.