Saturday, January 11, 2003, Chandigarh, India


M A I N   N E W S

Nagiís appointment set aside
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 10
Dr Onkar Nath Nagiís appointment as the Dean of Post-Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research was today set aside, for the second time, by the Punjab and Haryana High Court. His appointment was initially set aside in November, 2001.

Pronouncing the orders on a petition filed by instituteís Head of the Radiology Department, Dr Sudha Suri, after hearing the matter for over three months, a Special Division Bench of the High Court further issued directions for fresh appointment.

In her petition against Dr Nagi, the Union of India, PGIMER, its governing body and 13 other respondents, Dr Suri had earlier asked if it was permissible for authorities to ignore a senior doctor for appointment as the Dean.

Seeking the quashing of the appointment, she had also sought directions to the respondents to appoint the Dean on the basis of seniority and suitability as per the rules and regulations.

Going into the background of the case, Dr Suri said that Deanís post fell vacant in September 1998 after Prof Amrit Tiwari attained the age of superannuation. Dr Nagiís subsequent appointment as the Dean was approved by the governing body on July 25, 2001. The same was, however, challenged. The appointment was later set aside and quashed vide judgement dated November 22, 2001. The special leave petition filed on behalf of the Union of India and Dr Nagi was then dismissed with a modification pertaining to the competent authority for appointing the Dean.

Dr Suri further submitted that the governing body once again approved the appointment of Dr Nagi as Dean in a meeting held on April 4 last year. Challenging the appointment, she had added that one of the primary functions of the Dean was the appointment of examiners and the holding of examinations, but a ďperson who had himself indulged in unfair means and tampering with official record could not be appointed to the Deanís postĒ.

Dr Nagiís counsel, in a written statement, had, on the other hand, submitted that the petitionerís case had been duly considered, but she was not selected. Counsel for the PGIMER had added that the petitionerís case was indeed considered on merits by the competent authority, but Dr Nagiís case was ďfound to be more meritoriousĒ. Moreover, the legal right of the petitioner had not been infringed upon. The writ petition was not maintainable and deserved to be dismissed in limine, it was concluded.

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