BAHAWALNAGAR-The grave irregularities found by an official report in the district administration and the Health Department continue unabated making the mockery of the Directorate General Health Services Punjab’s orders.

A letter (641-44/HE dated 17.03.2014) was issued by the Directorate General Health Services Punjab, addressing to the executive district officer health of Bahawalnagar regarding the irregularities.

The letter says, “With reference to the monthly report about the school health and nutrition supervisors of Bahawalnagar district for the month of February 2014, the senior management of health department is taking serious view of poor performance of SH&NS. There is dire need to take appropriate action to improve the school health services in response to the poor performance reflected in monthly report for the month.”

The 11 supervisors who performed poorly besides four others include: Imran Khan (Basic Health Unit Mohib Ali), Muhammad Gulzar (BHU Jandwala), Fahad Ali (BHU Qasimka), Zainul Abidin (BHU Roda Singh), Muhammad Zaman (BHU Kabotri), Shahzad Latif  (BHU Musa Bhota) and Muhammad Ibrahim (BHU Kalia Shah). They have been performing general duties at the office of DCO Bahawalnagar for the last 1 to 3 years, in violation of the general rules and their job description. A government servant disclosed on the condition of anonymity that the general duty should not exceed three months. After elapse of the period, he added, a seat should be created at the place of general duty. However the district administration and the health authorities neither crated new seats nor they cancelled the general duties of the supervisors, he noted.

According their job description, they shall implement health and nutrition programme in the catchment area under the supervision of health officer, in-charge BHU, to mobilise the community and involve the local population in improving healthcare in catchment area of BHU and to organise and hold meetings for community health education.

Nasir Wattoo, a primary school teacher of Jandwala area, said that arranging the teachers’ training to screen the students for common disease and referral facilities for their management are the integral part of the supervisors’ job description but unfortunately for the last two years, no such activity was sighted in the area. He added the students’ health was completely ignored as the supervisors were on the general duty at the DCO’s office.

A senior official at the DCO office said that the supervisors were least bothered to comply with their job description since the commencement of their job. Instead, they manage to get favour of the administration and were doing the general duties, he added. He said that some of them were involved in corruption and abusing the authority. Meanwhile, the administration is indifferent to the healthcare and nutritional issues of the students. They are getting hefty salaries and other perks and privileges without work, he regretted.

Besides, they also draw Rs2,955 as health reforms allowance, not admissible to the health officials on general duty. The allowance is admissible only to  the health officials performing duties at their place of posting. Deputy District Health Officer Dr Ahmad Mehmood, who is also the reporting officer, said, ‘I used to mark absent of the supervisors whenever a visit the respective BHU for inspection. Executive District Officer Health Dr Habibur Rehman said, “I have gone through the letter and will take action according the directions of the health high-ups.”

He said that in the light of the letter’ the supervisors would have to resume their charge at their respective BHU in a few days . When asked about the illegal drawing of health sector allowance, he said that the amount paid to them would be recovered  in installments.