Punjab Medical Council (PMC), a statuary body established under an act of law, has denied disclosing the amount it has collected as fees for new registrations or renewal of registrations of doctors under the Right to Information (RTI) Act. The council also said it can't take any action against unregistered medical practitioners.
A registered doctor and a senior medical officer in Punjab Health Systems Corporation Dr Daler Multani had filed an RTI query seeking information on the total amount collected as registration fee by the PMC between January 1, 2014 to December 31, 2014 and for what purpose it was being utilised.
PMC, in its reply, said: "It is a financial matter and a proper audit is being done by a chartered accountant. We pay full income tax…you are a third party in it, hence information cannot be given."
Dr Multani has now filed another RTI application, in which he has asked the public information officer (PIO) and registrar of the council Dr Manjit Kaur Mohi to explain that when he is registered with the council and has paid registration fee, how could he be a third party?
PMC also maintained a stoic silence on questions pertaining to steps it has taken to control quackery or any action taken against unregistered medical practitioners in Punjab, claimed Dr Multani.
In reply to his first question, PMC asked him to contact the director health and family welfare. On action against unregistered medical practitioners, the council said it was not under its preview.
PMC president Dr GS Grewal, however, said: "PMC has nothing to hide. The income of the council can be disclosed under the RTI Act. I'll look into the matter," he said.
On quackery, Dr Grewal said, "We can't initiate a crack down on quacks on our own. But if a complaint comes to us we can lodge an FIR with the police as quackery is a criminal offence. We can also write to t eh department concerned."