Scam in NHM put on back burner

Scam in NHM put on back burner
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Srinagar: The scam over recruitment and transfers in the National Health Mission (NHM) J&K has been put in cold storage by the government. Complaints registered with the State Vigilance Commission and the JK Police’s Crime Branch, accusing former NHM directors of serious corruption, have been left as pending.
As per official documents, nearly 122 contractual employees including doctors and paramedics were appointed illegally under National Health Mission J&K in the past three years, as no selection test or interview was conducted for recruitement.
“The appointments were purely done on monetary considerations. The process took place through internal arrangement by former directors of NHM after which multiple selection and transfer lists were issued,” sources told Kashmir Reader.
They said that most of the postings were made during the tenure of former Director Dr Mohan Singh.
“No selection criterion was followed during the process as every candidate was cleared based on a negotiated amount ranging from Rs 1 lakh to Rs 10 lakh,” the sources said.
Another official letter, a copy of which is with Kashmir Reader, revealed that 426 doctors and paramedics were attached by former Directors in violation of the recruitment rules.
In addition, former Directors shifted hundreds of employees from one institution to another in connivance with Chief Medical Officers (CMOs).
“NHM directors have ignored merit in most of the selections, which has led to many court cases and put the administration in a tight spot,” a senior official said.
“The prestigious scheme had become a money-minting industry in Jammu and Kashmir as every posting and transfer was done against a huge payment, that too in violation of norms laid down by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India,” another official said quoting a complaint filed with the State Vigilance Commission.
The document reveals some glaring examples, including the selection of Dallu Verma as DEIC Manager at SMGS Hospital without requisite qualification and experience. The case is being investigated by the Vigilance Organisation.
“NHM Director has taken money for every selection and the matter is under investigation by Crime Branch in the case of Syed Tanveer Qadri Vs Mohan Singh. Directions were passed by the court to the Crime Branch Srinagar for necessary action,” an official privy to the development told Kashmir Reader.
Similarly, the State Monitoring & Evaluation Officer was selected by bending the rules.
As per the recruitment criteria, if the candidates are more than five times the advertised posts, written examination shall be conducted. However, in this case for one post more than 20 candidates had applied and the entire selection criteria was changed without seeking the approval from Chairman of the Governing Body, which is the Chief Secretary, J&K.
Dr Irfan, who was selected as Assistant Program Manager, was in the waiting list at serial number 4. He was selected without calling the first three candidates. Dr Irfan also not have a valid degree and experience at the time of selection.
The post of Program Officer ASHA was a post for a Medical Officer, against which Imran Bukhari was selected who is simply a graduate and does not have the requisite qualification and experience.
“All the selection/ recruitments made during the tenure of Dr Mohan Singh have been made on financial considerations, thus ignoring the merit and in total violation of the rules and regulations,” an official said.
Rahul Mahajan, State Accounts Manager, NUHM, who is the close aide of Dr Mohan Singh, was reengaged by him even after being terminated for not reporting to duty for 2 and half months without the approval of Secretary Health.
Commissioner Secretary, Health and Medical Education Department, Atal Dullo said he was yet to look at the complaint.
“I have joined the department recently. Let the complaint reach me. I will look into it and take up the issue with concerned quarters,” he said.