Tug of war between Cong ministers tears Health & Med Edu deptt apart
CM forced to intervene,orders constitution of high level committee
Jammu, Sept 15: Two Congress ministers in Jammu and Kashmir coalition, the minister for Health Sham Lal Sharma and Minister for Medical Technical Education R S Chib are involved in a tug of war each claiming his jurisdiction over the regulation of the private Ancillary Medical Training institutes in the state.
While the internal squabbling between the two ministers has given extra freehand to the private AMTIs who have already been floating the guidelines with impunity, the issue has forced the Chief minister Omar Abdullah to intervene to diffuse the tension between the warring ministers.
Sources said that main bone of contention is the sanction of No Objection Certificates (NOC) and administrative control over such institutes.
Official sources revealed that the institutes, across the state, except two ATM schools being run by the government, were under the direct control of Health Minister till recently. However, the Medical Education Minister has managed to take over the control.
If sources are to be believed the Medical Education Department has issued an order recently directing all the private para-medical institutes to reserve ten seats, each, for the government nomination. “This is in clear violation of the rules and an attempt to take over the control of the institute”, sources revealed.
“The clash of interests of the two ministers has led to a state of confusion forcing the CM to intervene” said highly placed sources.
They said that after being approached by the Health Minister Sham Lal Sharma, the chief minister has ordered constitution of a chief secretary headed Regulatory Committee with the directions to holdback permissions for opening such institutes in the state.
The proposed committee has been asked to give recommendations for streamlining the recognition and affiliation procedure besides to keep a check on the violation of norms and guidelines by the management of these institutes.
But officials said that these efforts would not prove fruitful, keeping in view the continuous tension between the two ministers who don’t see eye to eye with each other on many policy decisions.
Sources said that though these institutes come under the health department, the division of the department between two ministers has led to confusion among the officials who are receiving simultaneous directives from each minister.
At the moment there are 66 government and private para medical institutes in the state with intake capacity of 13,646 students, bust most of these, particularly the private institutions are running in rented buildings and without proper infrastructure.
“Two ministers heading Heath and Medical Education department have led to near chaos. There is clash of interests on many issues which has kept many decisions to streamline the heath sector pending”, said a source.
In fact few months back alarmed at the clear violation of admission norms by the paramedical institutes, the government had constituted a committee to probe irregularities in the admissions, particularly issuance of selection letters by the institutes to the candidates in violation of norms.
“But no action was taken against any of the violators, reason interference from the ministers. There is no headway to deal with the violators”, said a source.
Official said that at times some paramedical institutions are issuing selection letters to the candidates on their own despite the fact that they have not been selected by the health department for admission.
When contacted, Director Health Jammu, Dr Madhu Khullar, who also heads the State Medical Facility, however said that it is an internal matter of the department. “Chief Minister had recently taken a meeting with the higher officials and we are waiting for the minutes of meetings and direction of the government in this regard”, Khullar said.
Lastupdate on : Thu, 15 Sep 2011 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Thu, 15 Sep 2011 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Fri, 16 Sep 2011 00:00:00 IST
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