CVO accuses MCI president, officials of harassment

CVO accuses MCI president, officials of harassment

CVO accuses MCI president, officials of harassment

The Chief Vigilance Officer at the Medical Council of India (MCI) has accused MCI top brass, including its president Jayashreeben Mehta, of harassing and threatening him for probing several cases of corruption in the council.

When the scared vigilance officer, H K Jethi, sought repatriation, the Union Health Ministry asked the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) to conduct a probe. But six months after he wanted to return to his parent cadre, the ministry has begun looking for Jethi’s replacement.

In April, Jethi wrote to the Union Health Secretary apprehending that he might be a victim of “statutory and physical harassment” because of his drive against corruption at the MCI.

“The situation is getting worse and the MCI president is using all pressure tactics for destabilising the functioning of the vigilance division. I am feeling scared as I am fighting alone against corruption in MCI against the wishes of strong lobby in their premises, among their employees without any support,” he wrote in his letter, a copy of which is available with Deccan Herald.

In May, the Central Vigilance Commission asked the health ministry to probe Jethi’s accusations and take the help of Delhi Police if necessary. Subsequently, the ministry wrote to the CBI in July, asking the agency for a “comprehensive enquiry” to check the veracity of the allegations.

In a letter to the CBI, a senior health ministry official said top MCI officials including its president, Mehta, have been treating the CVO with a “vindictive attitude” for investigating complaints against MCI members.

It was alleged that the harassment increased when the CVO refused to issue a letter to the CBI at Mehta’s insistence, though he did not agree to the letter’s contents.
Also inspite of repeated reminders to submit action taken reports on various CVC references, there was no action from the MCI administration. The regulator refused to take action against individuals involved in irregularities, said the ministry’s letter citing several examples.

For instance, MCI was hiring electricians and operators on the basis of “fake documents” and recruited “consultants” and “advisors” to the president and established an “Academic Council” in violation of law and against the advice of the health ministry. The MCI president was seemingly “functioning in an autocratic manner” for protection of “some vested interests,” said the letter. She is believed to be close to scam tainted former MCI president Ketan Desai.

While the officer, who wrote to the CBI, has now been transferred out of the central government, the health ministry earlier this month began the process of finding out a replacement for Jethi, responding to his requests.