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Karnataka High Court Puts In Abeyance Order Withholding Salary Of Principal Health Secretary For Failure To Install MRI Machines In DIMHANS

Mustafa Plumber
8 April 2022 10:00 AM GMT
Karnataka High Court Puts In Abeyance Order Withholding Salary Of Principal Health Secretary For Failure To Install MRI Machines In DIMHANS
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The Karnataka High Court has till April 21, put in abeyance its order directing not to disburse the salary of the Principal Secretary, Health and Family Welfare (Medical Education) for failing to install M.R.I. Scanning Machine at the Dharwad Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences (DIMHANS). A division bench led by Chief Justice Ritu Raj Awasthi had in November 2021, directed...

The Karnataka High Court has till April 21, put in abeyance its order directing not to disburse the salary of the Principal Secretary, Health and Family Welfare (Medical Education) for failing to install M.R.I. Scanning Machine at the Dharwad Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences (DIMHANS).

A division bench led by Chief Justice Ritu Raj Awasthi had in November 2021, directed the State Government to upgrade DIMHANS, by March 1, 2022, to a higher psychiatry centre and to install and make operational the MRI Machine in the hospital.

It had then said, "We are not satisfied with the explanation given for the delay in implementation of the project particularly installation of MRI machine. However, we are made to understand that a three months mandatory period is required as it (machine) has to be imported from outside the country, for which the order would be placed by December 1. Let the machine be installed and made operational by March 1, 2022. As undertaken by the Principal secretary, Medical Education Department."

However, on April 5 when the matter was heard the court was informed that an affidavit has been filed indicating therein that the M.R.I. Scanning Machine has been delivered to DIMHANS 25% civil work for installation was remaining.

Hearing this, the court observed that the requirement and utility of MRI machine in DIMHANS is not denied and the matter with respect to the same has been going on for a considerably long time. Time was granted to the authority based on the assurance given by the Additional Advocate General that the machine would be made operational by March 30, however, the machine has yet not been installed.

The bench then opined that it is a "very sorry state of affairs" and it "adversely reflects on the intention of the Authorities" in getting the M.R.I. Scanning Machine installed in the hospital concerned.

"We cannot appreciate the conduct of the officers concerned. We therefore, direct that the salary of the Principal Secretary, Health and Family Welfare (Medical Education) shall not be disbursed till the M.R.I. Scanning Machine is installed and made operational," it had ordered.

After the order was dictated but before it was signed, a mention was made by AAG Dhyan Chinnappa, requesting that the Principal Secretary, Health and Family Welfare (Medical Education) has highly regretted the delay in installation of the M.R.I. Scanning Machine and requests for one more opportunity to do the needful. He requested that part of the Court order regarding non-disbursement of salary to him may be put in abeyance till next date. The court accordingly allowed it.

The direction was given during the hearing of a public interest litigation filed by the Karnataka State Legal Services Authority in the year 1996.

Case Title: Karnataka State Legal Services Authority v. State Of Karnataka

Case No: WP 18741/1996

Citation: 2022 Livelaw (Kar) 111

Click Here To Read/Download Order

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