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Home > News > PTI

Ramadoss removes Venugopal as head of Cardio Surgery Dept

April 11, 2007 15:46 IST

Armed with a High Court order, Union Health Minister Anbumani Ramadoss has removed All India Institute of Medical Sciences Director P Venugopal as head of the Cardio Thoracic Surgery Department, appointing a person next in seniority to him to the post.

The minister, who has had a running battle with the AIIMS director, shot off a letter to Venugopal on Tuesday saying the Division Bench of the Delhi High Court on March 29, had ruled against his continuance as Professor and Head of Department of Cardio Thoracic Vascular Surgery and there was a direction that appropriate order be passed.

"In pursuance of the court order Professor Sampat Kumar, who is the next senior most has been made Head of Department," Ramadoss said.

According to Mukul Gupta, who is AIIMS lawyer representing the minister, Venugopal was clearly directed by the high court that he could not hold two posts and had terminated his position as professor.

"When he failed to step down, the minister as President of the institute had to come out with this order," he told PTI on Wednesday.

"This is not just a contempt of court, but also abuse of authority on Venugopal's part. This is a good reason to sack him now," said senior lawyer Prashant Bhushan, who represented NGO 'Centre for Public Interest Litigation" that had filed the petition against Venugopal.

"Quite apart from this fact, they (Ministry) should make it clear in the rules that the age of retirement for director should be 62 years. Venugopal has crossed it," he said.

On March 29, the Delhi High Court held that the noted heart surgeon cannot hold two posts and terminated his position as professor in the cardiology department.

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