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Home / Chandigarh / Mohali SMO shifted over ‘misuse of power’

Mohali SMO shifted over ‘misuse of power’

Punjab health minister orders inquiry into alleged irregularities; principal secretary to submit report within a week

chandigarh Updated: Jan 11, 2020 00:49 IST

Finding “gross misuse of power”, Punjab health minister Balbir Singh Sidhu on Thursday transferred Dr Manjit Singh, senior medical officer (SMO) of the Mohali civil hospital to Fazilka with immediate effect. The new SMO, Dr Areet Kaur assumed the charge on Friday. She was earlier working as an assistant director at the health department’s head office in Chandigarh.

Meanwhile, the minister has also marked an inquiry against Dr Manjit Singh to the principal secretary, health, and sought a detailed report within a week.

According to sources, Dr Manjit Singh allegedly referred around 100 patients, who were to be treated at the civil hospital in Phase 6 under the Ayushman Bharat — Sarbat Sehat Bima Yojana, to a private hospital. After the insurance company found some irregularities, it investigated the matter before sending a written complaint to the Punjab chief minister’s office. Earlier, too, Dr Manjit, who is an eye specialist, was transferred to Kurali on the charges of irregularities.

“We have been receiving several complaints against the SMO for misuse of power and harassing his junior doctors as well as paramedics. An inquiry has been marked to the principal secretary, who will be submitting the report within a week. Thereafter, action will be taken,” said Sidhu.

“Besides getting complaints from junior doctors and paramedics, we also received complaints that the SMO was not obeying government directions about extending benefit of government schemes to patients. There is zero tolerance to such negligence at any level,” said the minister.

When contacted, Dr Manjit Singh said: “I have been relieved from the post. I am not aware of any inquiry against me. I tried my level best to serve the hospital.”