Dental Council members' letters raise serious questions against Chairman
In a fresh twist to the Dental Council scam, letters written by the members of Dental Council of India (DCI), accessed exclusively by CNN-IBN, have raised serious questions against the present Chairman of the Council, Dr Dibyendu Majumdar. In one of the letters, written by a member of the DCI Dr Joseph Issac to the Union Health Ministry, questions the manner in which the Council is being managed to suit private colleges.
Meanwhile, a petition has also been filed in the Kerala High Court against the DCI chairman Dr Majumdar and others for alleged acts of corruption and impropriety. "They bargain the management. They blackmail the management and if they don't come to terms, they don't clear the files," Dr Issac alleged.
An email, written by another DCI member Dr Jayaraj creates more embarrassment for the dental body as it questions the manner in which an entire general body meeting of the DCI was manipulated to give clearance to some new courses, all for some considerations.
"I will step down if any corruption case can be proven against me," Majumdar, who denied the allegations of bribery against him, said. He, however, added, "Cannot act against erring members unless their nominating states act against them."
On January 18, the President of the DCI of Tamil Nadu, Dr Gunaseelan, was arrested by the Central Bureau of Investigation for his alleged involvement in a multi crore scam in private dental colleges across the country.
Dr Gunaseelan's aide, Dr Murugesan was caught red handed by the CBI with a bribe Rs 25 lakh in cash, taken from a private dental college, in lieu of permissions being granted for starting a post-graduate course. The arrest was made after the investigating body conducted raids across several places in Tamil Nadu, Kerala and Andhra Pradesh.
This is not the first time that the DCI is at the centre of a storm. Allegations of similar nature have been made against some members of the Council in the past.
The allegations have always been related to either increasing seats in colleges or showing enough faculty members, even if it is just on paper. CNN-IBN has been reporting on flaws within the Dental Council for almost three years now.
When a specific complaint was made before the Health Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad in May 2012, he had promised that the matter will be looked into and some action will be taken. However, nothing has been done till now. There is a list of measures suggested by the Dental Council to improve its own credibility, but the measures would not have any impact unless the constitution of the Council is relooked.