Vested interests return to PM&DC Some members keen to get approval for banned medical colleges

2928

Zubair Qureshi

Islamabad

PPakistan Medical & Dental Council (PM&DC) is holding an important meeting today (Wednesday) to get approval for the inspection teams that will be empowered to grant or refuse registration to the private medical and dental colleges in the country.
A total of 11 teams that were constituted to visit and inspect 167 medical and dental colleges of the country—63 government sector and 104 private institutions were declared ‘Pilot’ study as they were done without fulfilling codal formalities as mandated under the law.
Interestingly, out of the 17-member council only 2 blue eyed members are aware of the names and credentials of the members of these inspection teams and whole council is bound to give its consent.
Sources told Pakistan Observer here Tuesday once the inspection teams approve a medical or dental college it will be allowed to offer admissions for medical degrees, MBBS or BDS to those who have qualified in the Intermediate examination s and charge exuberant fees from them.
In its last meeting, some of the council members had insisted the names of the members of inspection teams be presented before the council as the council is the supreme body to decide and the PMDC ordinance also requires this but they were told the names could not be revealed and they were only required to give their assent failing which dire consequences occluding withdrawal are to be faced.
A senior official of the PMDC when contacted by Pakistan Observer confirmed there were differences among the members over the way the council is being run by a couple of powerful members who are considered close to KP’s influential figure Dr Nauserwan Burki who perhaps doesn’t know his name is being misused.
The official further told Pakistan Observer that a number of council members have raised serious objections to this unusual haste being taken to inspect and approve medical & dental colleges but they are told by
their ‘powerful’ colleagues to simply fall in line or their names would be de-notified.
The colleges they are going to inspect and approve include those which were earlier de-registered by the council over failure to meet criteria, the official further said.
In April this year, the council had cancelled registration of the Rawal institute of Medical sciences over its failure to meet the required standards but the sources said the college administration is trying to get approval through the new inspectors’ team. Interestingly the counsel now on behalf of the Council was the counsel on behalf of petitioner College in the same petition.
Similarly, another medical college North-West Medical College also falls in the category of the medical colleges that are without up-to-the-mark facilities but certain members are trying to use their influence by constituting teams of their favourite inspectors to get approval for them.
President Dr Arif Alvi earlier this year had promulgated PM&DC Ordinance 2019 according to which a 17-member council was entitled to run the affairs of the doctors as well as medical and dental colleges. With the ordinance the previously established adhoc council had ceased to work.
The sources further told that the way PMDC is bullied by a couple of members served a grim reminder to what former President of the PMDC Dr Asim Hussain did in the past during his tenure by granting registrations to dozens of such medical colleges as were without even the basic criteria like building or faculty. “Dr Asim Hussain is still facing NAB cases and if the present council and its administration don’t run its affairs transparently and legally it is feared they too could face NAB for malpractices,” they said.
Meanwhile, a summary recommending de-notification of the dissenting members has been sent to the Prime Minister’s Office again though without giving any solid ground for the de-notification and it is learnt that de-notification has been approved without any regulations in place and without assigning any reason whatsoever.
As for inspections, some ‘lenient’ inspectors would be sent to inspect these colleges as in the past they even obliged an owner of medical college in Islamabad by giving a wrong statement in the court.
The two blue eyed members soon after their resignation from the Council went straight to the Ministry to manage moving a summary for de-notification of members who fought for the right. It is reiterated that there were serious observations on the credibility of these members and the Council had raised questions on their illegal act of sending their friends and colleagues for inspections of colleges without approval of the council as mandated under law and awarding colleges such as Northwest and Pakistan international Peshawar etc category A 1, to allow these colleges to collect higher fee being contradictory to the supreme court ruling.
It is pertinent to mention here that the two blue eyed members are trying to use PMDC resources to oblige hand picked colleagues for obvious reasons to charge whatever fee they like by giving them rating of category A. When these two members were questioned in the last council meeting of these wrongdoings they walked out of the Council meeting using derogatory language, said the sources. Earlier too . worthy to mention here that one of the members just recently got his honanary degree of FCPS registered by the PMDC by using his influence. The Council held serious reservation over the issue of acquiring illegal registration.