| State Health Society, Bihar. Telegraph picture |
Lack of coordination between the health department and respective district administrations in conducting police verification of contract doctors has cost the medicos their salaries since March.
The process had to be completed by June, but as things stand now, the fate of 1,500 and odd contract doctors around the state is stuck in a limbo.
Members of Contract Doctors’ Association blamed the district health societies for not going about the work systematically. Some even called the notification wrong.
State Health Society, Bihar, in March this year issued a notification for the police verification of contract doctors by June. The order also stated that unless and until the verification was done, the doctors would not get their salaries. So, the contract doctors have not even got their salaries since March.
Abhishek Kumar Singh, the general secretary of Contract Doctors’ Association, said: “The State Health Society issued the notification in March that contract doctors had to be verified by police before June and only then get their salary. This is injustice. We are having a hard time depositing school fees of our children. We also have other expenses too. How can we run our families in the absence of a salary.”
Sources said the process was stuck for the failure of the district administrations concerned to complete the police verification and communication gap between the district health societies and the local administration to get it done in a systematic manner. The contract doctors blamed the district health societies for the delay.
Amitabh Sinha, the president of Bihar State Contract Doctors’ Association, said: “The district health societies, which run under the State Health Society, is to be blamed for this delay. The district societies concerned did not provide a list of the doctors to the local administrations concerned that is working under it to complete the verification process. We can’t really blame the local administration for this but yes, they have a responsibility too.”
In Patna, there are around 100 contract doctors whose police verification has not yet been done. Repeated attempts to speak to Patna district magistrate N. Saravana Kumar proved futile.
Sinha added: “Police verification is the norm for any appointment. Why didn’t the department conduct police verification at the time of our recruitment? Why have they initiated the process after we are five to six years into the jobs? It is ridiculous.”
R.P. Ojha, additional secretary, health, said: “Unless and until we get the police verification reports, we can’t do anything. The district magistrates concerned have been informed to complete the process soon,” he said.