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Govt sides with hospital, quashes Citu protests

Muffling protests from its powerful labour wing, the government has sided with the superintendent of a state-run hospital on the transfer of a Group C employee.

The government on Friday shifted Chinmoy Sikdar, a Group C employee of Sambhunath Pandit Hospital, to RG Kar Medical College, revoking its previous order to stay the transfer.

Sikdar, who has been working as a technical assistant in the pathology unit of Sambhunath Pandit Hospital for more than 15 years, was served the order amid protests from the Citu-affiliated West Bengal Ministerial Officers’ Association.

In the previous order, the government had asked Sambhunath Pandit Hospital superintendent Sukumar Das to keep Sikdar’s transfer in hold. Das had got Sikdar shifted in line with the government’s policy to transfer all Group C and D staff who have served in one hospital for 15 years or more.

Officials at Writers’ Buildings on Saturday said health minister Surjya Kanta Mishra intervened and got the previous order revoked after Das lodged a complaint with him.

“It’s a victory for me and those at the helm in hospital administration as the government stood by my decision to transfer Sikdar. It would have been really embarrassing for me to continue in the hospital had the government not withdrawn its previous order,” Das said, minutes after receiving a fresh order from Writers’ Buildings on Friday.

Admitting that there had been “mild protests” from Group C and D staff when Sikdar was served the transfer order, Das said the government’s gesture would boost the morale of hospital superintendents.

In a report published in Metro on July 9, Das was quoted as saying that it was humiliating for him to continue as superintendent after failing to push through Sikdar’s transfer.

A spokesperson for the Citu-affiliated association said they had to accept the fresh order “in a bid to restore discipline”. “But we still feel that the transfer is undesirable,” he said.

Officer arrested: Satyabrata Chowdhury, block land and land reforms officer of Swarupnagar in North 24-Parganas, was arrested at his residence on charges of bribery on Saturday. “We laid a trap on the basis of a complaint lodged by Swapan Chakraborty, a brick kiln-owner, and caught him red-handed,” said additional superintendent of police Ajay Nand.

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