Punjab health minister Chetan Singh Jouramajra, who was recently criticised for publicly humiliating a senior health official in the state on camera, has found himself in yet another uncomfortable situation. Days after Dr Raj Bahadur, vice chancellor of Baba Farid University of Health Sciences, quit after being humiliated by Mr Jouramajra, it has emerged that former state Chief Minister Charanjit Singh Channi’s sister-in-law Dr Maninder Kaur had also opted for premature retirement after being rebuked by him.
Ms Kaur is the wife of Mr Channi’s brother Dr Manohar Singh, who had unsuccessfully contested as an Independent from Bassi Pathana in the recent state Assembly polls. Even though Dr Singh claims his wife had opted for retirement before the health minister’s visit, sources say the transfer list that came out after Mr Jouramajra’s visit to her hospital, and had her name in it, was the reason for her quitting the job.
Mr Jouramajra had reportedly lashed out at Dr Kaur for non-functional fans and lack of cleanliness during his visit to Kharar Civil Hospital where Dr Kaur was posted as a senior medical officer.
Meanwhile, Dr Raj Bahadur has not joined back despite Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann apologising to him.
Even though Mr Mann apologised to Dr Bahadur, the Aam Aadmi Party spokesperson has backed the health minister for his ‘routine inspections’.
The incident involving Dr Maninder Kaur happened last month, more than 10 days before Dr Raj Bahadur was forced to lie down on a dirty hospital bed. She was then transferred from Mohali district to Barnala district.
She was shifted from the Kharar civil hospital to Dhanaula in the Barnala district two days after the visit of Health Minister Chetan Singh Jouramajra to the Kharar civil hospital, where she was posted as a senior medical officer, sources say.
“My wife has taken premature retirement because of personal reasons,” Manohar Singh, has, however, contended.
“We are living in Kharar and we cannot shift to Barnala,” he added.
Last week, Aam Aadmi Party MLA from Jalandhar West Sheetal Angural went to the district administrative office and tried to pull up staff and officials going live on his Facebook page. Upset over his behaviour, the entire staff of the complex announced to go on indefinite strike. The MLA later apologised on camera after intervention from the Chief Minister’s office.