By Avinash Prabhakar
New Delhi, Feb 16 (SocialNews.XYZ) A senior Doctor at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences has been accused of misusing his official position to get his wife appointed as Junior Medical Officer, reveals a Delhi based advocate application to the Central Vigilance Commission.
"Dr Ranjan Gupta, Assistant Professor at AIIMS, New Delhi, was the principal investigator of the project entitled 'Multi institutional Network Program on Systematic Lupus Eurythmics' which was funded by the Dept of Biotechnology, Govt of India. He appointed his wife in this project in contravention to the CCS conduct rule for fraudulently obtaining undue financial benefit from government exchequer", reads the application from advocate Rupali Kumari, copy available with IANS.
The advertisement issued by Dr Ranjan Gupta was a sham and he ensured that nobody except his wife would attend the interview for the post of Junior medical officer, says the application which was sent to the CVC on July 16, 2021.
"The selection committee comprised of Dr Ranjan Gupta, Dr Saumya Ranjan, Dr Sirish Ippagunta and Dr Shami Mohammad. It is also clear that Dr Ranjan Gupta in his capacity as Principal Investigator of the project had constituted this selection committee. It is impossible that the other members of the committee were not aware that Dr Ambika Gupta was the wife of Dr Ranjan Gupta which is apparent from her credentials. Surprisingly only Dr Ambika Gupta attended the interview for the post of junior medical officer. There is a reason to believe that no intimation was sent to other two candidates and there is a strong possibility that other two candidates were fictitious and their names were used to camouflage the corrupt practice of Dr Ranjan Gupta to ensure appointment of his wife", the complaint reads further.
In this connection, one Dr Rajesh Gupta had also written to the AIIMS director dated Nov 21, 2019. "I am an MBBS Doctor. I had applied for Junior Research Officer in AIIMS Delhi. But, I was not called for the interview. When I tried to get the information regarding this, I came to know that Dr Ranjan Gupta appointed his wife on this position", reads the letter of Dr Rajesh Gupta the copy of which is with IANS.
However, in response to a RTI by Swapnil Tripathi in connection with complaint against Dr Ranjan Gupta for making arbitrary appointment of his wife Ambika Gupta, AIIMS said that the appointment was for the Junior Medical officer, not for 'Junior Research Officer' and it was not illegal and was made with due process. The Project Investigator - Dr Ranjan Gupta - had advertised the contractual post in his research project as per the sanction of the funding agency. However, no application was ever received from Dr Rajesh Gupta for the said post as intimated by Dr Ranjan Gupta, PI, and no documents of Dr Rajesh Gupta has been received in Research Section from PI, says the RTI response.
Dr Ranjan Gupta, Project Investigator, himself advertised the post, screened application and conducted an interview, the RTI response says. The interviewing panel selected a suitable candidate as per the requirement of the project. The research section had finally considered the application which was recommended and forwarded by the PI, it says.
The RTI communication, which IANS has the copy, says further, "There were only three applications received including Dr Ambika Gupta who presented herself and the rest of the two were absent. The interview for the post of Junior Medical Officer was carried out by the interviewing panel with only one candidate being present and Dr Ranjan Gupta was not a part of the interviewing panel and therefore, couldn't have used any influence to make the appointment".
Dr Ambika Gupta worked for about one and half month and resigned from the post thereafter, it adds further.
However, the Minutes of the Interview available with IANS says, "For the post of Junior Medical Officer, only one candidate Dr Ambika Gupta appeared and the rest two were absent. The interview was conducted by Dr Soumyaranjan, Dr Shamim Ahmed and Dr Sirish Ippagunta in the presence of the representative from Research section."
However, AIIMS has not responded to the clarifications sought by IANS.
(Avinash Prabhakar can be reached at Avinash.email@example.com)