The state health department suspended the medical officer with immediate effect and attached him to the office of a special secretary in Patna.
Patna: A medical officer in Bihar has been suspended for ordering that “jhola-chhaap” doctors (quacks) be identified and trained to treat patients with coronavirus infections in the state.
The Bihar Health Department, in its suspension order Wednesday, has criticised Ashesh Kumar, the civil surgeon of the state’s Siwan district, for issuing the circular on March 25. Screenshots of the circular have been shared extensively on social media.
The state health department issued a notification, suspending Mr Kumar with immediate effect and attached him to the office of a special secretary in Patna.
The civil surgeon has also been reprimaned for undermining the state government’s efforts to fight COVID-19 by issuing an order “to identify private hospitals and jhola-chhaap doctors in their area to train and press them into services”. The notification said the order was “against medical protocol”.
The notification also criticised the official for acting “without seeking permission or bothering to inform” his seniors about the move and pointed towards the “criticism” the department faced when screenshots of the circular went viral on social media.
Former Chief Minister Lalu Prasad Yadav shared the circular on Twitter and heavily criticised the current Bihar government over the incident.
झोलाछाप डॉक्टर, कोरोना और बिहार = ड़बल इंजन सरकार https://t.co/EMW3JJuZ5j
— Lalu Prasad Yadav (@laluprasadrjd) March 30, 2020
Mr Yadav, who is currently serving time at a hospital in Ranchi in the fodder scam cases, had recently shared a screenshot of the circular with a trademark one-liner “jhola-chhaap doctor, corona and Bihar equals double engine sarkaar” – a reference to the BJP-JDU government in the state.