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Order on Dr Venugopal's dismissal reserved

Written by: Staff

New Delhi, Mar 23: The Delhi High Court today reserved its order after the completion of the arguments on the issue of dismissal of All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) Director P Venugopal from his post.

A bench of Justice Swatanter Kumar and Justice H R Malhotra said the order was reserved and would be pronounced later.

Additional Solicitor General(ASG) Gopal Subramanium submitted that under the stewardship of Dr Venugopal, the administration in the premier medical insitute had deteriorated.

He alleged that there was financial mismanagement and diversion of funds from the main bank account to another account. The audit had also objected to the creation of another account, which is managed at the behest of the Director. In a government institute such financial irregularities are not permitted.

During the anti-reservation agitation, he had allegedly made infalmatory speeches instigating the faculty and residents doctors of upper caste to agitate against the government, said Subramanium appearing for the government.

During the dengue epidemic, most of the senior doctors were busy in an Indo-US medical conference and the patients were dying due to lack of treatment, he alleged.

Refuting the allegation that due procedure was not followed in the last general body meeting, the ASG said agenda was served on Dr Venugopal for the meeting held on October 18. The show-cause notice was served to him during the meeting with all allegations including charges of financial irregularities.

Senior Counsel Arun Jaitley appearing for Dr Venugopal submitted that the decision for the creation of a reserve fund was taken at the governing body meeting and the money from the account was spent for the treatment of the poor and needy.

The Central Government, AIIMS and the Institute's governing body had filed a petition challenging the November 2006 order of the Single Bench, which had ruled against Venugopal's dismissal.

In July 2006, a decision was taken by Health Minister and AIIMS president Anbumani Ramadoss supported by a majority of the 17 members of the governing body to sack Venugopal.


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