Faridkot, July 29
Health Minister Chetan Singh Jouramajra has been caught in a tight spot after he asked Baba Farid University of Health Sciences (BFUHS) Vice Chancellor (VC) Dr Raj Bahadur to lie on a patient’s “dirty” bed at Guru Gobind Singh Medical College and Hospital here today.
Feeling very low: VC
I am feeling very low. I have worked in 13 highly prestigious institutions in the past 45 years of my medical profession in India and abroad, but have never been treated like this. Dr Raj Bahadur, BFUHS VC
Surprise visit to bathinda hospital
- Health Minister Chetan Singh Jouramajra on Friday made a surprise visit to the Civil Hospital in Bathinda and interacted with patients to know about the quality of healthcare
- “As part of the state government’s ambitious plan, six mohalla clinics will be opened in Bathinda district. Residents can avail themselves of quality medical services free of cost at mohalla clinics,” said the minister.
- He visited the emergency ward, Anti-retroviral Therapy (ART) centre, OPD complex, drug warehouse, and women’s and children’s hospital at the Civil Hospital. TNS
It was an unfortunate incident. We all are part of this system and should work as a team to improve the situation, which has been gradually rotting for the past many years. — Kultar Singh Sandhwan, Assembly Speaker
Min must apologise
Dr Raj Bahadur is an internationally acclaimed doctor. He must be the age of Jouramajra’s father and to treat him like that was shameful. The minister should apologise. — Raja Warring, PCC Chief
CM should take action
The minister misbehaved with Dr Bahadur, a highly reputed VC of the BFUHS. This has hurt the sentiments of the medical fraternity. The CM must take action. — Daljit S Cheema, SAD
A video of the minister “forcibly asking the VC to lie on the bed” has been doing the rounds.
The minister can be “heard speaking rudely” with the VC over the lack of cleanliness in the medical college.
Guru Gobind Singh Medical College and Hospital is a constituent of the BFUHS.
Dr Bahadur (71) is a noted spinal surgeon in the country, and Project Director and Member Secretary of the Regional Spinal Injuries Centre, Mohali. He is also a member of the National Medical Commission, the apex medical regulatory body in the country.
When contacted, Dr Bahadur said he did not want to go into the details of the incident. “I am feeling very low. I have worked in 13 highly prestigious institutions in the past 45 years of my medical profession in India and abroad, but never been treated like this,” he told The Tribune.
Doctors in the medical college and civil hospital in Faridkot expressed anguish over the incident. Dr Paramjit Singh Mann, state president of the Indian Medical Association, termed it the “most unfortunate incident”.
“Instead of improving the healthcare system, political leaders are humiliating doctors to gain some brownie points. They want to project themselves as ‘active’ ministers, but the reality is they are spoiling the system,” said Mann.
Dr GS Grewal, former president of the Punjab Medical Council, said the Health Minister had no right to question the VC.
“The VC is answerable to the Chancellor, who is the Governor, and not to the minister. Instead of humiliating the VC in the presence of his staff members, the minister should have raised the matter with the Governor,” he said.
Dr Grewal noted Dr Bahadur was among the top spinal surgeons in the world and had a waiting period of three months for a spinal surgery. “Humiliating such a person is the bankruptcy of our leaders,” he said.
Political leaders across the political spectrum also hit out at Jouramajra.
Assembly Speaker and AAP MLA Kultar Singh Sandhwan termed the incident unfortunate. “We all are part of this system and should work as a team to improve the situation, which has been gradually rotting for the past many years,” he said.
Sunil Jakhar, BJP leader, tweeted: “The treatment meted out to Dr Raj Bahadur is shameful and unacceptable. Funds will fix the health infrastructure, not uncouth behaviour. The CM should ask the minister to apologise to the medical fraternity.”
Jouramajra could not be contacted in spite of repeated attempts.
His personal assistant, Gurdev Singh Tiwana, said he was unaware of the incident at the Faridkot medical college. He assured this correspondent that he would arrange a phone call with Jouramajra, but he did not respond till the time of filing the news report.
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