As many as 22 doctors were suspended by the Uttar Pradesh [ Images ] government for their alleged involvement in the Rs 9000 crore National Rural Health Mission scam.
Their suspension follows indictment of these doctors by the Central Bureau of Investigation that is probing the scam that also involves murder of three district chief medical officers over the past three years.
The suspended doctors include former Lucknow [ Images ] Chief Medical Officer Dr A K Shukla , whom the special CBI court granted bail last week after a month in judicial custody. Among others were medical superintendents of different local hospitals in the state capital, one additional CMO and three junior medical officers.
According to UP Health Minister Ahmad Hasan, "The doctors were accused of large scale pilferage of funds out of various heads under the NRHM programme."
Nearly Rs 5,000 crore out of the Rs 9,000 crores allocated by the Union government between 2005 and 2011 towards NRHM projects is suspected to have been pilfered and the booty shared between some ministers, Indian Administrative Service officers, doctors, engineers and other government officials .
The scam led to sensational killing of three district CMOs , Dr Vinod Rai , Dr.B Singh and Dr Y S Sachan. While Rai and Singh were gunned down outside their homes during their routine morning walk, Sachan was strangulated inside the Lucknow district jail after being taken into custody.
Several bigwigs were already behind bars in connection with the scam. These included former Family Welfare Minister Babu Singh Kushwaha , former Principal Health Secretary and 1981 batch IAS tpoper Pradeep Shukla , PACCFED Managing Director V K Chowdhury, chief engineer M N Tripathi, superintending engineer A K Srivastava and assistant engineer Vipul Kumar Gupta.