Tainted officer promoted as DG, ISM

Srinagar: The state government has promoted an officer to the post of Director General, Indian System of Medicine (ISM), who is facing corruption charges in State Vigilance Organisation (SVO) and the High Court.
“Pursuant to his promotion in the common pool of posts for HoDs, Dr Abdul Kabir Dar, Director, (ISM) is hereby re-designated as Director General (ISM),” a recent government order said.
Dar, who was last year appointed as Director, ISM, is facing charges of issuing fraudulent diploma certificates to hundreds of candidates. He is also accused of misappropriation of funds.
Last year, the State Vigilance Commission (SVC) referred his case to the SVO to get it probed. “The complaint be referred to Vigilance Organisation (to) get the matter probed into by initiating preliminary enquiry and submit report thereof to this commission,” the SVC had said in its order.
The SVC said it had received complaint regarding fraudulent diploma certificates issued by Dar in violation of the government order (No. 121-HME, GR of 2008, dated October 17, 2008).
But even as the SVO probe was pending against him, Dar was given the charge of full-fledged Director ISM on November 29 last year by the Cabinet with an effect from 2006 since when he was working as in-charge Director.
The promotion came after the SVO on September 10, 2013 issued clearance certificate in favour of Dar, which was issued to General Administration Department (GAD), saying that there was no preliminary enquiry or FIR pending against him. However, in reply to an RTI application seeking status of the probe against Dar, the SVO on October 22, 2013, revealed that the probe was still under progress and hadn’t been concluded yet.
After his promotion, the complainant filed a PIL before the High Court. The court on July 5 this year sought records from SVO and Health and Medical Education Department pertaining to the enquiry conducted on the selection of pharmacists on fake certificates allegedly issued by Dar.
According to the complainant, Dar, who was Director, ISM, then issued diploma certificates of Dawasaz training to hundreds of candidates when the norms and procedures for making nominations for training course had not been even formulated.
Diploma training certificates were issued to the ‘favourite’ candidates by Dar after the Department of Health and Medical Education cancelled the list of candidates nominated for the training in 2008 after finding it not based on approved norms.
“These candidates were not given training but certificates only, and some of them were later appointed as Dawasaz (ISM pharmacists) in various health institutions on the basis of these certificates,” said the complainant.
According to documents furnished by the complainant, Dar communicated to the Health and Medical Education Department (vide letter no. DISM/DS/Trgs/3036-37, dated February 02, 2008) that there would be requirement of 500 Dawasaz in various health institutions of ISM under the National Rural Health Mission.
“So the formal advertisements notice need to be issued for inviting application from eligible candidates,” Dar said in the letter.
Later, on June 27, 2008, the Health and Medical Education Department (vide letter no. HD/51/ISM/2008) with the order of Minister for Health and Medical Education nominated 994 candidates for the Dawasaz training and sent the list to Director ISM for further necessary action.
However, on July 10, 2008, the department (vide letter no. HD/51/ISM/2008) withheld the list till the issue was re-examined by the competent authority.
But on October 17, 2008, the department (under order no. 121/HME (GR)/2008), stated that after the issue was examined it was found that there was no sanctioned intake for Dawasaz training course and there were no norms and guidelines prescribed for such nominations.
“It was found that the list which had been forwarded to Director ISM was not based on any approved norms and guidelines. So the list of 994 candidates is hereby withdrawn and accordingly cancelled,” said the order.
The Department of ISM was also directed to frame and formulate the norms and procedures for making nominations for undergoing Dawasaz training courses.
However, according to complainant, the ISM Department had issued certificates to hundreds of candidates in 2008 when the norms and procedures were not even formulated.
The names of some candidates who have been given certificates also appear in the nomination list cancelled in same year.
After delaying the process for at least three years, the directorate of ISM formulated the norms and procedures for making nominations for training in 2012, but certificates had been issued to candidates before that as well.
Dar is also facing charges of misappropriation of funds at Vanaspati Van Society, an Indian government-sponsored scheme implemented in J&K, where he had served as its Member Secretary, and the case (VOK/SLK/ARM of verification No. 46/2011-SLK) is also registered at SVO.