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Sulabh fraud at Rajindra hospital

The Government Medical College and Rajindra Hospital is amid yet another controversy. It turns out the hospital management has been paying salaries to several 'ghost employees' for the maintenance of its toilets and bathrooms on the hospital premises.

punjab Updated: Jun 17, 2012 13:51 IST
Navrajdeep Singh

The Government Medical College and Rajindra Hospital is amid yet another controversy. It turns out the hospital management has been paying salaries to several 'ghost employees' for the maintenance of its toilets and bathrooms on the hospital premises.Sulabh International Social Service Organisation is taking care of the hospital's cleanliness for the last four years.

The hospital signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Sulabh in 2008.As per their work contract, the Sulabh International estimated that it would need about 80 workers and three supervisors for the upkeep of the hospital.

The contract said that the hospital would only pay the salaries of these 80-odd employees and the cost of maintenance would be borne by Sulabh from this amount.

It was also mentioned in the contract that the contractual workers employed by Sulabh would be paid Rs 3,600 per month, while supervisors would get Rs 5,600 per month.

As per this agreement, the hospital was paying around Rs four lakh per month to Sulabh for the upkeep of its premises.

The class IV employees union recently registered a complaint to the medical superintendent and deputy medical superintendent of the hospital regarding several anomalies in this arrangement. The hospital's inspection team, comprising deputy medical superintendent Dr Harshinder Kaur and a few senior doctors probed the complaint.

"The records revealed that Sulabh had employed only 40-odd workers to carry out its job, but it was charging salaries of 81 employees from the hospital. Fake entries of workers were made in the records," said a senior hospital official.

A source in the hospital said that the Sulabh's registers claimed that it was maintaining 400 toilets and bathrooms in the hospital. "That was also a fudged figure because the hospital premises have only 310 toilets and bathrooms," said the source.

Apparently, the registers maintained by Sulabh were counting several toilets and bathrooms in the old operation theatre building and orthopaedics workshop of the hospital. Both these buildings were demolished several years back.

Some officials in the hospital claimed that apart from these discrepancies Sulabh had also failed to keep the hospital clean.

"Seeing the poor condition of the toilets and the bathrooms, it seems they have spent nothing to keep the premises clean. Unhygienic conditions prevail in the hospital. Since I joined a couple of years ago, I haven't found the toilets clean," said a doctor.

College principal Dr KD Singh, however, was not very forthcoming on the matter. "We had a work contract with Sulabh International and we have made the payments as per that contract in the past three-and-half years," he said.

He refused to divulge more details.

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