Mumbai: The story of fake CPS certificate revealed yet another hand, when the Maharashtra medical council informed that 57 “specialists” who have been suspended by the council, on account of fake PG degrees had obtained the degrees in the same batch of 2014-15, all procured in the name of the same medical college.
The Maharashtra Medical Council (MMC) seized ‘fake post-graduate degrees’ of 57 practicing doctors, and has revoked the practising license of all fake degree holders.
The degrees of all the 57 doctors are obtained from the College of Physicians and Surgeons (CPS), Mumbai and belonged to the same batch of 2014-15.
The MMC in its defence told News18, “From where the certificates have come that cannot be investigated by us. We don’t have the expertise to investigate this. So we have asked the police to carry out necessary investigations and find out from where these students procured the certificates.”
The Medical Dialogues team has earlier reported that the Maharashtra Medical Council stumbled upon the scam over two years ago, while scrutinizing documents of a candidate, who had submitted a fake certificate for registration. This prompted the medical council to launch a statewide probe into the matter.
Most fake degrees were of sought-after courses such as diploma in gynaecology and obstetrics, diplomas in ophthalmic medicine, general surgery and cardiology, fellowships in surgery, medicine.
The MMC investigations revealed that around 77 doctors had failed the College of Physicians and Surgeons examinations, but managed to procure passing certificates and had been practising based on those specialists’ degrees since.
The state medical council began taking action and 20 of these doctors were suspended in the month of April 2018. The 20 doctors had confessed that they paid lakhs of rupees in order to procure fake PG degrees and they also named a middleman who is paediatrician by profession. Later, the MMC summoned 53 specialists for questioning.
Further inquiry led to 50 more doctors coming out and pleading guilty to the fraud and submitting written apologies. These doctors were handed a one-year suspension by the council. Another 7, who did not show for the final hearing were handed over a 5-year ban.
The whole case of fake certificates was linked to a larger scam and is alleged to have been involving more medical practitioners, who were assisting these doctors to get their “Pass certificates.” Doctors allegedly paid between Rs 3 lakh and Rs 6 lakh for the certificates after failing the CPS examination.
The paediatrician, Dr Snehal Nyati’s name figured as the kingpin of the scam.
After a confirmed identification that he was the one allegedly helping doctors procure fake certificates, the MMC permanently revoked Dr Nyati’s registration to practice. The Bhoiwada police filed a charge sheet against Dr Nyati, but he got out on bail.
In his defence, Dr Nyati maintained that he was being framed as a part of a larger racket. News18 quotes a statement of Dr Nyati, recorded by the MMC, as stating, “Dr Snehal Nyati stated that he has been unnecessarily framed in this alleged CPS degree scandal. He has been made a scapegoat by the CPS committee just to protect the chair and position of the current CPS President Dr Girish Mainderkar and his team members.”
The President of CPS, Dr Girish Mainderkar, on the other hand has denied these allegations and said that it was the responsibility of the MMC to verify every certificate with the college before issuing licenses.
He told news18, “They have to cross check before they get students enrolled as a specialist doctor in the field. We don’t know how these students got registered.”
MMC in its defense said that all the certificates appeared to be original, which is why it went ahead and issued license to the doctors, adding that they did not have the “expertise” to investigate.