SKIMS principal in dock as Govt calls report on mixing of pregnant with CoVID patients

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By KNB on 01/05/2020.

SKIMS principal in dock as Govt calls report on mixing of pregnant with CoVID patients

2nd time Div Com seeking report over the mishandling of Covid19 patients” 

Srinagar  May 01: In a major development,  Divisional Commissioner Kashmir has sought a report from  SKIMS Bemina for mixing three pregnant women with CoVID-19 patients.

Notably, the SKIMS Bemina was earlier also in eye of the storm over the failure of the administration to follow protocol which possibly led to the death of first Covid19 patient.

This is the second time during the Covid19 crises, Divisional Commissioner Kashmir has sought a report from SKIMS administration over their mismanagement of Covid19 patients.

Then Divisional Administration had sought a report from the SKIMS Bemia, however that has yet to see the light of the day,  a senior officer in administration said..

The largest controversy erupted when the SKIMS Beimana faculty threatened to resign enmass over the  mismangment of principal regarding the safety of doctors and patients admitted in the hospital.

SKIMS faculty members have accused college principal Dr Reyaz Untoo of mixing three pregnant ladies – two from Anantnag and one from Gund Jahangir in Bandipora – on April 27 in existing labour room where CoVID-19 patients were being treated.

 “On April 27, three suspected cases were admitted in the existing labour room where already CoVID-19 positive patients were being treated,” reads a letter from SKIMS faculty members to their Director A G Ahangar.

 Three women – Haleema wife of Shabir Ahmad Khan of Kharpora Kokernag Anantnag, Iqra wife of Khursheed Wani of Telwan Shangus Anantnag, and Afrooza wife of Shabir Bhat of Gund Jahangir – were operated upon at SKIMS Medical College Bemina.

 Faculty members said pregnant women, who before hospitalization had tested negative, should have been put in quarantine before being sent home after surgery.

 “They must have contracted the virus in the hospital ward for no fault of theirs,” said a faculty member.

The faculty members and residents of SKIMS Medical College are now up in arms against Untoo for “harassing them and using unparliamentary language” during their several meetings.

 “Our Principal has refused to listen to us on repeated occasions and harassed many faculty members and even used unparliamentary language several times. Any algorithm mentions team leadership. Unfortunately, this critical aspect is lacking sorely at this hour of crisis. Vindictiveness under such circumstances, which you are witness to, is reprehensible. Hiding behind curtains, doors and not allowing faculty into the room is a sign of selfishness,” reads the letter.

Government initially designated SKIMS Bemina as a level-2 CoVID centre and later level-3 centre.

 “However, Principal has been admitting dozens of level-1 patients which defeats the purpose of the original designation. The admissions are done in the evening so that the CoVID Committee is circumvented,” said a faculty member.

Even the letter has mentioned that a frank and scientific discussion was not allowed with the result some disastrous decisions were implemented after 4 pm unilaterally after the meeting.

 Talking to Kashmir News Bureau, Divisional Commissioner Kashmir P K Pole said he has called for a report from SKIMS administration on how the three pregnant women were mixed with CoVID-19 positive persons in the hospital.

 History sheeter

Untoo was suspended in 2011 from Composite Regional Centre Bemina over corruption charges and his name surfaced in lens scam also.

“Since, he joined as incharge principal, the healthcare in SKIMS Bemina has deteriorated. He has brought disrepute to the institution  as recruitments and procurements are happening without merit and competition,” said a faculty member.

While the SKIMS claims to be guided by the Medical Council of India (MCI) rules, the Principal Dr Reyaz Untoo floated the rules and appointed the faculty members as per obsolete rules of J&K government to help to accommodate his relatives and blue-eyed candidates.

One of many such instances is advertisement notice No:02 SKIMS MC of 2018 Dated 05-02-2018 and re-advertisement notice no: 3 SKIMS MC of 2018 Dated 28-06-2018 for appointment of Associate and Assistant Professors in various departments of SKIMS proves the facts.

Dr. Untoo provided 10-year age relaxation to his wife Dr Mumtaz Gowhar and appointed her as lecturer in Physiology. The date of birth of Dr Mumtaz Gowhar is 13-10-1968 and date of her first appointment in government sector as lecturer physiology in SKIMS Medical College Bemina took place on January 11, 2018.

While age relaxation was denied to other candidates, Principal SKIMS recommended and approved it for his wife by 10 years in gross violation of rules. The appointment to the post was delayed for several years till she got a postgraduate degree in Physiology from Himachal Pradesh.

 A PhD student from AIIMS New Delhi and Post-doctorate from Ohio Medical University, USA was dropped to accommodate his wife.