SRINAGAR: The Directorate of Health Services Kashmir (DHSK) has directed the concerned officers to immediately disengage all part-time sweepers who were engaged without following proper procedures. The move comes after it was discovered that these appointments were made in violation of due process.
As per the order issued by the Deputy Director of Health Services Kashmir, all Chief Medical Officers, Medical Superintendents, and Block Medical Officers across the region have been directed not to use the services of these part-time sweepers any further. They have been warned that failure to comply with this directive will hold the respective Drawing and Disbursing Officer (DDO) personally responsible for any associated liabilities.
The order clarifies, “As per the direction of the administrative department, it has been directed to disengage all part-time sweepers who were engaged without any due/proper procedure forthwith and identify the officers/officials who were responsible for the same so that disciplinary proceedings, as warranted under rules, shall be initiated against them for making such engagements without following proper procedure.”
The Health and Medical Education (H&ME) department had on October 16 written to the DHSK Kashmir to disengage all part-time sweepers and submit an action taken report within one week.
Moreover, the process of sanitation had been outsourced, leading to unpaid wages for these part-time sweepers, as their appointments were not covered by regular budget allocations.
In response to this issue, the H&ME department directed DHSK to disengage these sweepers and submit an action report within a week. The department cited unnecessary continuation of these services, given the shift to an outsourcing model for sanitation activities, and also underlined the lack of a legal basis for retaining these part-time sweepers.
The H&ME department, in its latest communication, reiterated the need to disengage the part-time sweepers and submit an action report. It also pointed out the necessity of complying with the orders of the Supreme Court and addressing the issue of arrears for the petitioners, in line with Finance Department recommendations.
Additionally, the H&ME department expressed dissatisfaction with the incomplete information provided by DHSK regarding the issue and urged a more proactive approach in handling such matters in the future.
“… your attention is brought to your office letter No. DHSK/Legal/7078516/248-49 dated 09.10.2023 where under you have simply forwarded the information, that too incomplete, without proposing any action to be taken against the delinquent officers/officials. This post office disposal may kindly be desisted from henceforth,” the order reads—(KNO)