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Harsh Vardhan denies allegations of removing MCI CVO

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The Minister’s statement comes two days after letters from Mr. Jethi to the Central Vigilance Commission complaining of "victimisation and harassment" by the MCI administration

Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan on Saturday vehemently denied he had any role in the removal of H.K. Jethi as the Chief Vigilance Officer (CVO) attached to the Medical Council of India (MCI). The Minister’s statement comes two days after letters from Mr. Jethi to the Central Vigilance Commission complaining of “victimisation and harassment” by the MCI administration and seeking repatriation to his parent cadre surfaced.

Describing the reports as “without basis”, the Minister in a statement said: “Some reports say I have removed him, which is absurd. Others say that I put the officer to personal risk by not repatriating him, which is equally untrue.”

Referring to the Ministry’s decision to repatriate him, the Minister said Mr. Jethi, an officer of the Indian Ordnance Factories Service, “was unhappy” with his appointment which goes back to October 3, 2013 and had written three letters dated April 29, 2014, August 25, 2014 and October 1, 2014 to the Ministry of Health requesting repatriation to his parent cadre.

Even as questions are being raised about Ministry’s role in addressing the concerns of Mr. Jethi, the Minister said a “sympathetic view” of the CVO’s complaints was taken and his request had been forwarded to the DoPT.

The Minister admitted that the previous CVO of the Ministry, Dr Vishwas Mehta, who was in charge of dealing with MCI, had referred a letter from Mr Jethi alleging some misdemeanour on the part of the MCI authorities to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI).

The Minister said soon after assuming office he had constituted a Committee of Experts under Prof. Ranjit Roy Chaudhuri to comprehensively review the Medical Council of India Act, 1956. The recommendations of this committee would go a long way in bringing transparency to MCI’s dealings, he said.

Dr.Vardhan said a “non-issue” had been turned into a personal attack on him. “My agenda to reform medical education and root out corruption in all institutions continues notwithstanding these reports,” he said.

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Printable version | Jan 27, 2020 9:48:41 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/union-health-minister-denies-allegations-of-removing-mci-cvo/article6578593.ece

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