Health Minister defends AIIMS Vigilance Officer's removal

Health Minister defends AIIMS Vigilance Officer's  removal

Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan today defended the removal of AIIMS Chief Vigilance Officer Sanjiv Chaturvedi saying he was "not eligible" for the post.

"He was not at all eligible for the post that he was holding at AIIMS. We were informed that without the approval of the Central Vigilance Commission, nobody can be assigned the post of CVO anywhere.

"This was brought to our notice, we took cognizance of the same and removed him from the post," Vardhan told reporters when asked about the sudden removal of Chaturvedi, who has the reputation of being a whistleblower.

Chaturvedi was removed from his post yesterday with the Health Ministry citing no reason for the decision. The charge of his office has been assigned to Joint Secretary and CVO of Union Health Ministry, Vishwas Mehta.

"With the approval of Health Minister it has been decided to assign the charge of CVO, AIIMS, New Delhi to Joint Secretary and CVO, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare for a period of three months with immediate effect," the Health Ministry order had said.

The tenure of Chaturvedi, a Haryana cadre forest service officer of 2002 batch, was fixed for four years and was to have lasted till June 2016.

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