TN: High Court hauls up Medical Council chairman
Chennai: The Madras High Court directed the Chairman of Tamil Nadu Medical Council to appear before it to explain how a doctor, whose registration was suspended, continued his practise in his village, violating the Council's orders.
Justice N Kirubakaran gave the direction, when a petition by suspended doctor Dr K Ramachandran, who runs a nursing home with a scan centre at Periakurichi in Cuddalore district came up before him, seeking to quash the 24 May, 2016 order of the Council, suspending his registration.
The Council had suspended him for violating the Pre-Conception and Pre-Natal Diagnostic Technique(Prohibition of Sex Selection Act), 1994.
On 7 February, 2014, based on complaints against the nursing home, officials made a surprise visit. Two days later senior government medical personnel also went there, interacted with staff and a pregnant woman.
Acting on the team's report, the Sub-District Appropriate Authority seized machinery and other accessories in the nursing home, sealed it and suspended it's registration.
It also lodged a private complaint under PCPNDT Act and Section 3 and 4 of the Medical Termination of Pregnancy Act. A criminal case was registered against the doctor.
The petitioner, meanwhile, preferred an appeal before the District Appropriate Authority. As it did not dispose it, he moved the High Court which directed the appellate authority to dispose it in eight weeks, which too was not done.
On 17 February, the Council's order said the charges against the doctor were proved and recommended that his name be erased from Tamilnadu Medical Register for five years.
The doctor then moved the Madras High Court which set-aside the order with a direction to the Council to pass fresh orders as per Section 23(2) of the PCPNDT Act.
The Council in its 24 May order said his registration was suspended till disposal of case, which he challenged.
The petitioner submitted that in view of repealing of Amendment Act 14 of 2003 which came into force from 9 May, the Council's power to place a medical practitioner under suspension pending criminal charges have been removed.
The Judge asked the Assistant Solicitor General Su Srinivasan, appearing for the Union Government why these stringent provisions were diluted by the Centre and under what circumstances these were diluted.
Tamil Nadu Medical Council submitted that despite the order, the doctor is practising and produced a prescription issued by the doctor during the suspension period.
The Judge after recording all the submissions, directed the Chairman to be present in the court.