Medical officer accuses DM of abusing him, latter denies

Rae Bareli (UP), Sep 6 (IANS) The Chief Medical Officer of Rae Bareli has filed a complaint against the District Magistrate for using inappropriate language against him, a charge that the DM has denied.

In a written complaint to the state's director general of health and family welfare, Chief Medical Officer (CMO) Sanjay Kumar Sharma alleged that DM Vaibhav Srivastava called him ‘gadha' (donkey) and threatened to bury him in the ground and skin him, during a meeting.

The DM was apparently upset over the absence of another doctor, Manoj Shukla, at a Covid-19 review meeting convened by him.

Sharma said the official had asked for leave as his wife had been diagnosed with a pre-cancerous condition.

“The officer had given me this information over the phone and asked for permission to take his wife to Lucknow, which I gave him in view of the circumstances,” the complainant wrote in his letter.

The letter starts by saying, “The District Magistrate of Rae Bareli, Vaibhav Srivastava, has broken all records of misbehaviour. The disrespect shown to me caused me distress and I left the meeting”.

Copies of the complaint have also been marked to the state and district chairpersons of the provincial medical services (PMS).

The complaint alleges, “The District Magistrate often uses abusive language with the medical officers. Under these circumstances, it is almost impossible for us ‘corona warriors' to work.”

It ends with a plea to take appropriate action to ensure that the respect and dignity of doctors is maintained.

The meeting of nodal officers in-charge of the Covid-19 situation was held on Friday evening.

Meanwhile, Srivastava has denied these charges as ‘completely false and baseless'.

“There have been serious lacunae on the part of the CMO and I have given him numerous warnings. It is my duty to control the Covid-19 situation and if an official is not performing his duty, I have the right to ask for an explanation. However, I never used any foul language and the minutes of the meeting can be checked for the same,” he said.

He said the CMO's lapses included the inability to even present accurate numbers of Covid-19 deaths despite repeated questioning.

The District Magistrate has also denied Sharma's contention that the absent doctor had taken his wife for any kind of medical emergency.

“The meeting was in the evening and there could not have been a doctor's appointment for diagnostic screening in the night. The doctor himself told me that he had an appointment for Saturday. However, when I asked Dr Sharma, he was clueless and said that Dr Shukla might be in Lucknow or in Rae Bareli. His call records can be checked to see that he made the call while the meeting was ongoing,” Srivastava said.

He added that Shukla's presence at the meeting was important as he is in-charge of food supply at the L1 and L2 Covid-19 hospitals and there had been some complaints about the same.

Meanwhile, the district's PMS association issued a letter saying its office bearers met the District Magistrate and had a discussion with him after which they concluded that the language used by him could not be placed in the category of abuse. Sharma and Shukla were also present at the said meeting.



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