HC declines to stay order sending MS of Rajiv Gandhi hospital on leave

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New Delhi, Dec 31 (PTI) The Delhi High Court on Thursday declined to stay the order sending the medical superintendent of the Rajiv Gandhi Super Specialty Hospital (RGSSH) on compulsory leave in connection with some alleged scurrilous remarks made by him against lady doctors and nurses of the hospital. Justice Prateek Jalan issued notice to the Delhi government, the hospital and its director, who issued the order, seeking their stand on the plea by the medical superintendent (MS) before January 7, the next date of hearing.

The MS, in his petition, has contended that the December 23 order relieving him from his clinical and administrative duties and sending him on compulsory leave with immediate effect was 'illegal', claiming he was not given an opportunity to be heard.

The doctor, represented by advocate Arundati Katju, has claimed that the office order mentions numerous sexual harassment complaints have been made against him, but no details of the same have been given.

The petition has also claimed that the office order was issued a day after he lodged a police complaint against a lady doctor for allegedly barging into his office, abusing him and threatening him with dire consequences.

Advocate Sanjoy Ghose, appearing for the hospital, told the court that the audio clip containing the 'scurrilous remarks' allegedly made by the doctor has been filed on record and added that the lady staff of the hospital are on the verge of going on a strike in protest.

He also told the court that the doctor was sent on compulsory leave to defuse the situation and added that the MS had not attended that meeting of the Internal Complaints Committee (ICC) held on December 29 despite being allegedly informed via email and WhatsApp on December 28.

The notice of the meeting was also sent by special messenger to the doctor's residence but he refused to accept it, Ghose told the court and added that the next meeting was on January 4.

Katju, on the other hand, said she has received instructions that no notice of the ICC meeting was received by the doctor.

The court said it cannot direct the doctor to attend the meeting and he may do so if his lawyer advises him to.

It, however, asked the doctor's counsel to inform him about the next meeting's date, time and venue.

Ghose said he would inform the doctor's counsel about the time and venue of the next meeting. PTI HMP DV DV DV