MCI graft case leaves Azad fuming

Govt forms three-member fact-finding team to probe corruption charges

MCI graft case leaves Azad fuming

The committee headed by Additional Secretary K Desiraju has been asked to submit its report within a week, pending which permission to Gyan Sagar Medical College in Patiala to take a new batch of students has been kept in abeyance. In a strongly-worded statement, the health minister referred to his earlier communication to deans and principals of all medical and dental colleges in which he had asked them to refrain from entertaining any middlemen or conduits promising approval or recognition of their colleges for both undergraduate as well as post-graduate courses.
“I had given details of my fax,  telephone numbers and email address. I had also reiterated that I wanted to maintain absolute transparency in the functioning of my ministry,” Azad said in the statement.

The minister said he had “categorically directed that if any college authority entertains such middlemen or brokers it would be viewed seriously and followed by stringent and stern action, including withdrawal of the recognition or debarring from admitting a new batch of students for a year or two”.
“From the present events, it is evident that despite my clear directions to the ministry, MCI, DCI and managements of medical and dental colleges, unscrupulous elements continue to operate at various levels promising permission to medical or dental colleges,” he said.

The fact-finding team may clearly examine whether the recommendations made by the MCI were in order or not. Meanwhile, the renewal of permission granted on April 22, 2010 may be kept in abeyance till further orders, the minister said.
The strong message from the minister followed the recent arrest of four persons, including MCI President Ketan Desai, for allegedly accepting a bribe of Rs 2 crore through his middleman from the Gyan Sagar Medical College authorities for renewal of permission to take students for 2010-11.

“I understand that recommendations of MCI were put up for approval and accordingly sanction was issued by the Ministry on April 22, 2010,” he said.
Azad also directed health secretary to seek a report from CBI regarding the investigation currently under progress and more facts, if any, so that further necessary action can be taken.

Health Ministry officials said the team would include Dean of AIIMS Rani Kumar and a senior officer of the DGHS as its member. Desai and three others were arrested by CBI on April 22 and 23 over graft charges.

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