Dr S L Bandi awaits dues despite SC ruling
DESPITE BEING eligible for promotion a professor who was terminated from service by the State Government in 1998-99 on the grounds, which were overruled by the State Administrative Tribunal (SAT), High Court and later Supreme Court, still awaits salary and justice.india Updated: Mar 10, 2006 16:49 IST
DESPITE BEING eligible for promotion a professor who was terminated from service by the State Government in 1998-99 on the grounds, which were overruled by the State Administrative Tribunal (SAT), High Court and later Supreme Court, still awaits salary and justice.
The case in question is of Dr S L Bandi who was the senior most professor and surgeon of paediatrics in the State working as Superintendent Maharaja Yeshwant Rao Hospital (MYH) till 1996 and as acting Dean from 1997 to 19999. He was awaiting his promotion as dean when the State Government unceremoniously removed him from service.
A case of going on leave in 1995-96 without sanction was the ground on which notice was served on him and a fine imposed. Later, a case of mistakenly operating upon the wrong child in 1999 was made the grounds for his termination from service.
The State Government then appointed Dr DK Taneja a person figuring 16th on the rank of seniority as dean.
The case was then taken up before the SAT, which imposed Rs 500 fine or three months imprisonment on Dr Bandi for having gone on leave without sanction but cleared him of the charge of negligence in operating upon another child.
The case then went to the High Court that stayed his termination in 2000 and gave a ruling in his favour in 2002. The High Court in its verdict stated, “The authorities had not considered the fact and circumstances of the case, which led to the conviction of the respondent… and acted with a pre-determined mind, while imposing penalty of removal. His removal is liable to be set aside as penalty imposed is whimsical.”
The State Government then approached the Supreme Court and it too gave a ruling in Dr Bandi’s favour on December 14, 2005 instructing the State Government to pay the dues to Dr Bandi who had already crossed retirement age by that time. However, despite three months having passed since the issue of that order Dr Bandi still awaits his accumulated dues, which come to around Rs 15 lakh.
Dr Bandi told Hindustan Times that the case for his termination was based upon the alleged operation on the wrong child, whereas he was not accountable for this lapse in any way as a surgeon was meant to operate on a person brought on the operation table by the OT staff.
Explaining further he said that the child to be operated was a nine-year old male and when the OT staff went out to bring the child (Patient) a man standing with a child handed over the child who was of the same age, sex and complexion.
The mistake was discovered only when an incision had been made. He pointed out that the Supreme Court in its judgement delivered in 2004 had stated that a doctor was not liable for criminal neglect and could be tried only under civil law and criminal charges could be pressed only in extreme circumstances when clear evidence pointed to his wilful conduct.
Dr Bandi after getting reprieve from the Supreme Court in December 2005 sent a letter to officials concerned in Bhopal regarding payment of his dues on December 25, 2005 and a reminder on February 1, 2006. He said that if his payment were not cleared within six months he would file a case of contempt of court on the part of the State Government.
Talking to Hindustan Times the incumbent Dean Dr VK Saini said that Dr Bandi had given the best years of his services to the Government and worked to the utmost capacity till his service despite the fact that he remained at one place at times by bypassing transfers, which had cost him dearly in the form of expulsion and fine.
However, he had been removed from his post by the State Government and not MGM per-se and his matter had been referred immediately after receipt of the SC ruling to the authorities in Bhopal for necessary action. The amount payable to Dr Bandi would be reimbursed to him as soon as the State Government sanctions it.
The case for my termination was based upon the alleged operation on the wrong child, whereas I was not accountable for this lapse