Having come under clouds after a division bench of Jammu and Kashmir High Court directed the government to appoint a full fledged director for the department of Health Services Kashmir on substantive basis, the incumbent director has been evading replacement allegedly at the behest of Health Minister, Sham Lal Sharma.
“As far as the eligibility of Dr Saleem-U-Rehman is concerned, he does not qualify for the post of Director Health Services Kashmir for the reasons of neither having five years’ experience as ‘A’ grade specialist nor as Deputy Director Health Services Kashmir”, said sources to local news agency KNS, adding “ If rules are allowed to prevail none of the officers occupying high positions in the health department qualify for the posts but the government has the powers to ask Commissioner Secretary or Additional secretary of the health of the department to hold the charge till someone from the department qualifies for the post”, they added.
They said the government could relax rules to find a suitable choice from among the officers far senior to the incumbent director who are occupying insignificant positions in the dumping grounds of the department. Highly placed sources while disclosing this to KNS revealed that the present incumbent has come under fire from all quarters after a division bench of Jammu and Kashmir High Court comprising Justice Virender Singh and Justice Muzaffar Hussain Attar directed the government to appoint a new full fledged Director Health Services Kashmir on substantive basis. The court has asked the department to end the stop gap arrangement under which the present incumbent, factually occupying the position of Deputy Director, is holding the position of Director Health Services Kashmir for the last two years.
If sources are to believed the present incumbent under the clout of Health Minister Sham Lal Sharma has started hectic lobbying to garner the support of some senior ministers and legislators for delaying the process of the appointment of a new Director Health Services Kashmir, “but has failed to win over their support for delaying the process of the appointment of a new Director”.
Pertinently the division bench of the Jammu and Kashmir High Court in the above referred order has granted three months time to Government for the appointment of new Director
Meanwhile, a sitting MLA of ruling National Conference on conditions of anonymity said ” though Dr Saleem-U-Rehman has started hectic lobbying to garner the support of some ministers and legislators but almost all the ministers including the speaker assembly have extended their recommendations for the immediate replacement of the incumbent in compliance of the high court directions. He alleged the Health Minister Sham Lal Sharma of making overt and covert efforts to delay the process of the appointment of new Director Health Services Kashmir on substantive basis”.
However, when contacted, the Minister for Health and Family Welfare said that he has not received the orders from the court as yet. “The matter has not come to me so far and after going through its contents, we will decide the future action”, he added.