Thursday, January 16, 2003, Chandigarh, India


M A I N   N E W S

Suspend Principal: Dogra
Rejects demand for CBI probe
Varinder Walia
Tribune News Service

Amritsar, January 15
Health Minister R.C. Dogra has recommended the suspension of Dr O.P. Mahajan, Principal, Government Medical College, who was arrested by the special investigation team (SIT) in connection with the kidney racket.

Talking to The Tribune on telephone today Mr Dogra said the state government would not interfere in the investigation being led by Mr A.A. Siddique, Additional Director General-cum-OSD. He, however, dismissed the demand for a CBI probe.

In another significant development Mr Dogra said he would send the file to the Chief Minister on whether the authorisation committee should continue or not.

Mr Dogra, however, said he would resign and quit politics if allegations of his being in league with the doctors involved in the kidney racket proved true. He claimed that he had never met Dr P.K. Sareen, the main accused. He said the recommendation of a letter for seeking a favour for a patient was purely on humanitarian grounds.

He said he did not commit any wrong by sending the letter to Dr Sareen. Mr Dogra, however, was quick to add that he had never asked Dr Sareen or anybody else to violate any law while providing medical assistance.

He said he held Mr Satya Pal Dang and Ms Laxmi Kanta Chawla in high esteem but instead of their ‘negative approach’ they should try to do something constructive.

Interestingly, Mr Dogra said he did not have any knowledge on kidney transplants for more than eight months after taking over as the Health Minister. He said he came to know about it during his visit to Amritsar in November when somebody had complained that a nexus of doctors, advocates and middlemen was luring migrants to donate their kidneys against meagre amounts. He said he had immediately summoned S.P. Kunwar Vijay Partap Singh and had asked him to verify the antecedents of donors who had appeared before the authorisation committee.

Meanwhile, at an emergency meeting the Surgeons Society Amritsar condemned the arrests of Dr P.K. Sareen and Dr O.P. Mahajan. The meeting, chaired by Dr J.P.S. Chinna, has also decided to join the statewide agitation of doctors against the arrests.

On the other hand a joint action committee, headed by Dr Kuldip Singh Bhatia, has decided to hold a rally in this connection. Meanwhile, the doctors, nurses and other para-medical staff observed strike on the third consecutive day today. Except for the emergency services the health services remained paralysed.

Home | Punjab | Haryana | Jammu & Kashmir | Himachal Pradesh | Regional Briefs | Nation | Editorial |
Business | Sport | World | Mailbag | In Spotlight | Chandigarh Tribune | Ludhiana Tribune
50 years of Independence | Tercentenary Celebrations |
122 Years of Trust | Calendar | Weather | Archive | Subscribe | Suggestion | E-mail |