The Centre wants a doctor shunted out of the SSKM Hospital by the Mamata Banerjee government last year to head one of its ambitious health-care projects in Delhi.
Arun Singh, who headed the neo-natology department at SSKM Hospital till being transferred to Sagar Dutta Medical College in Kamarhati, will join as senior adviser to the national child health project if the state releases him for the assignment.
Anuradha Gupta, mission director of National Rural Health Mission, under which the child health programme functions, wrote to chief secretary Sanjay Mitra on February 6, requesting him to “release” Singh from the state’s services so that he can take up the job in Delhi.
“Considering the vast experience of Dr Singh and his expertise in child health, I will request you to release him for two years so that he can work for the national child health project. This is in the national interest of the country,” stated the letter, which the state government is yet to go through.
Singh was instrumental in setting up the sick neo-natal care unit at Purulia District Hospital and getting a multi-crore rupees project approved for building a neo-natal centre at SSKM.
He was transferred from SSKM Hospital to Sagar Dutta Medical College and Hospital, which has no neo-natal facility, last year after he allegedly misbehaved with a member of the expert committee on health set up by the chief minister.
The health department has also ordered a probe into charges of financial irregularities against him, which the doctor has dubbed “false and motivated”.
Sources said the health ministry’s family planning department had on February 6 approached Singh for preparing an “operational guideline” for the Rashtriya Bal Swastha Karyakram (National Child Health Programme).