Deputy Civil Surgeon penalised in Haryana for lapses

In a judgement to protect rights of individuals, the Haryana Right to Service Commission has imposed a penalty of Rs 20,000 on Deputy Civil Surgeon K.L. Malik, who is posted in a government hospital in Rohtak town, for delay in release of a death certificate relating to 1994 on flimsy grounds.

Commission Secretary Meenaxee Raj on Thursday said a long-pending issue of a harassed widow was finally resolved through the intervention of the commission.

She said though the record pertaining to the death was lost and destroyed in 1995 and this fact was also agreed upon by the Chief Commissioner of the Haryana Right to Service Commission himself who incidentally was Deputy Commissioner Bhiwani at that time.

An inquiry had been made into the factum of death of the deceased by Medical Officer Anand Prakash, who was posted at the government hospital in Meham, recommended the case for registration to the Deputy Civil Surgeon, Rohtak.

She said the inquiry was based on statements of Anganwadi workers who had made further enquiries with the villagers regarding the death and they also affirmed it.

Despite the inquiry, a clear recommendation by Anand Prakash to register the death but the designated officer wrongfully rejected the case, claiming lack of supporting documents to process the case.

Meenaxee Raj said even during the hearing before the Chief Commissioner of the commission, pursuant to the suo-motu notice served upon him based on the complaint made by the widow, the respondent doctor kept harping upon absence of proof of death. He had no realisation that once a person is dead, his or her death certificate could be the only proof of death.

Chief Commissioner T.C. Gupta said this was the most painful case where the system has turned so apathetic that a hapless poor widow, who has already lost her husband, is made to run from pillar to post to be able to get a death certificate.

Extreme and abject case of absolute non application of mind by the doctor concerned has led to imposition of maximum penalty as well as compensation in the case.

Gupta that the commission has also directed the Deputy Civil Surgeon Rohtak to directly pay Rs 5,000 as compensation to the complainant.

He said the Commission would not spare any officer who does not respect the applicant’s valuable time and is not committed to perform task on time.

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