There is uncertainty over the transfer of 402 senior doctors mostly from city areas to rural parts of the state.
The Maharashtra Administrative Tribunal (MAT) on Thursday set aside orders transferring 14 Class 1 medical officers and stayed transfers of 14 other doctors. The transfers were part of the state’s move to fill 2,700 vacant post (out of 7,218 total posts) in rural areas. The transferred doctors are of public health department but they work in medical colleges and handle administrative work, medico-legal cases.
Last week, some transferred medical officers moved MAT, challenging the orders. They said that though the transfer orders were dated May 31, portraying the transfers to be routine annual transfers, the transfers actually were mid-term transfers.
They also said an earlier date was mentioned on the transfer orders so as to fit those in routine transfer orders and escape from fulfilling requirements of provisions of the Transfers Act.
The legal provision requires approval of next higher authority of the person authorised to transfer them. The transferring authority for of medical officers is minister for public health and the next higher authority is the chief minister. Their lawyer Arvind Bandiwadekar said the orders issued from Mantralaya on May 31 were received by city-based office of Director General of Public Health on July 1.
The orders were issued on July 1 but May 31 was mentioned on the orders. The tribunal chairman Justice S. Radhakrishnan sought clarification by July 13 from the deputy secretary, who has signed the transfer orders.