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LAHORE: Chief Minister Shahbaz Sharif has approved the appointment of new principals for the four medical colleges of the province, directing the health authorities to get a written undertaking that they will give up their private practice in accordance with the fresh policy.

The health department had sent panel of three senior medics against each post of the principal through a summary and the chief minister finalised four of them (one each from the panels).

An interesting aspect of this development is that no candidate from any panel was called for interview by the chief minister, an official privy to the information told Dawn.

No one from four panels called for interview; picks can’t do private practice

Professor of Medicine Dr Ghiasun Nabi Tayyab has been appointed as principal of Postgraduate Medical College, Lahore, Professor of ENT Dr Rashid Zia for the Allama Iqbal Medical College, Lahore, Professor of Physiology Dr Zafar Tanvir for the Sahiwal Medical College and Professor of Paediatrics Dr Mubarak Ali has been made principal of Shaikh Zayed Medical College, Rahim Yar Khan.

The official said the contenders, who were awaiting interview call by the CM, got shocked by the decision of the authorities.

“It was quite an unusual practice that the senior medics recommended in the panels were neither called by the CM, nor taken in the loop by the health authorities,” the official said.

Professor of Biochemistry Dr Mukhtar Ahmad and Professor of ENT Dr Muhammad Saeed were in the panel for Sahiwal Medical College.

Professor of Forensic Medicine Dr Syed Aijaz Ali and Professor of Physiology Dr Abdul Rehman were aspirants for top slot of Shaikh Zayed Medical College.

In the panel for the PGMI, the health department had recommended paediatrician medicine professor Dr Agha Shabbir. For the Allama Iqbal Medical College (AIMC), the names of Sialkot Medical College Principal Prof Zafar Chaudhry and Gujranwala Medical College Principal Prof Dr Aftab Mohsin had been recommended.

The official said according to the health department’s policy, the senior medics doing services in peripheries were to be given priority for the teaching hospitals of the provincial capital.

However, it was another ‘setback’ for them that both Prof Dr Ghiasun Nabi Tayyab and Prof Dr Rashid Zia, who were posted to Lahore’s medical colleges, had been serving in the provincial capital since long.

The official said: “The health department has decided to re-advertise the post of principal of Quaid-i-Azam Medical College, Bahawalpur, on finding the candidates ‘not suitable’ for the top slot.”

The principal slot for the DG Khan Medical College would also be re-advertised on some other reasons which were yet to be known, he said.

The official said the new principals had been directed in the appointment letters to give a written undertaking that they would not be entitled to private practice.

“However, they can do institutional practice as per the new policy of the department,” he said.

Published in Dawn, February 16th, 2017