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Scan on absent doctors
- Show-cause notice for department head

Malda, March 7: Two senior state health officials who visited Malda Medical College and Hospital today served a show- cause notice on a head of department for his “prolonged absence” and expressed disappointment over the absence of doctors and professors at the facility.

Moloy Dey, the state health secretary and Sushanta Banerjee, the director of medical education, who were on a surprise visit at the hospital today, found that most of doctors were absent for days.

The officials held a meeting with the principal, Saibal Banerjee.

“At the meeting, they (health officials) were told that most of the doctors who are also faculty members at the medical college were absent for several days. They had been alerted earlier but still, there has been no change in the attitude of these doctors,” said a hospital source.

Sushanta Banerjee said: “The principal has been instructed to ensure that the doctors are regular, otherwise, their leave would be cancelled and even their salaries would be deducted. If these doctors continue to remain irregular, we would take more stringent steps. The practice of remaining absent from official duties will not be tolerated. Today, we have served a show-cause notice on Debabrata Banerjee, the head of the orthopedic department, for his prolonged absence.”

Hospital sources, however, could not say for how many days he had been absent.

There are 151 doctors at the hospital, who are also faculty members.

“On any given day, maximum 30-35 doctors are present at the hospital while the others stay away from duty. Many of them join duties for two-three days a week and leave for Calcutta to spend the rest of the week there,” said a source.

There are 76 sanctioned posts for Group C and Group D staff members at the hospital. “But as of now, only four Group C staff members and two Group D staff members have been appointed on a contractual basis,” said a source.

Today, representatives of the Progressive Doctors’ Association, the doctors’ front of the Trinamul Congress, submitted a memorandum to Dey and Banerjee.

“The medical college was set up in 2010 but still, a number of departments are yet to open. Many faculty members do not have accommodation and there is no space to hold classes. We want immediate improvement of infrastructure,” said Bikram Dhar, the Malda district secretary of the association.