VIVEK SHARMAJAMMU: Notwithstanding the notices served to Sanyog Enterprises Private Limited, a chain of private pharmaceuticals, to vacate the premises in the government run hospitals including the Government Medical College Jammu, Super Specialty Hospital, SMGS hospital and Gandhi Nagar Hospital, the J&K Medical Supplies Corporation is acting as a mute spectator. The permission to open 55 pharmacy shops in government hospitals was granted in 2015 during the tenure of Choudhary Lal Singh as Health Minister. As per the conditions in the 2015 tenders, Sanyog pharmacy shops were allotted for three years yet these continue to operate illegally after the permission lapsed in November 2018.
The J&K Medical Supplies Corporation, which had to float fresh tenders for these pharmacy shops, is delaying the process for obvious reasons. This pharmacy tender for Jammu based Government hospitals amounting Rs 22 crore was allotted in 2015 for a period of three years. Now with over one year delay in fresh tendering process, the J&K government is facing loss of over Rs 8 crore revenue per year. After the notices served by J&K Medical Supplies Corporation to Sanyog Enterprises, a petition was also filed in the High Court, which ordered fresh tendering at the earliest. As J&K Medical Supplies Corporation and Sanyog Enterprises have ignored the High Court orders, the petitioner Sanjay Kumar has decided to file contempt petition after the ongoing lawyers agitation is over. Kumar told STATE TIMES that there is a nexus between the J&K Medical Supplies Corporation, Sanyog Enterprises and officials of Health Department, who are hand in glove with each other. Medical shops were permitted to sell pharmacy in 55 hospitals in Jammu province in terms of tender NIT JKMSCL/Pharmacy/2015/107 dated 27 November, 2018. The bidding amount of Rs 21,51,00,000 quoted by Sanyog Enterprises was declared highest bidder. Against allotment of 55 locations, only 22 shops are presently running and rest have since closed. The medical shops were operated by the highest bidder Sanyog Enterprises only in those hospitals where the sales were high, said Sanjay Kumar. Financial Commissioner, Health and Medical Education Atal Dulloo said, “We are already inquiring into the entire matter related to allotment and running of shops in selected hospitals and once the report is submitted, we will go for tendering process in a transparent manner.”
“Meanwhile, the Sanyog Enterprises had approached court for stay and we are legally fighting to get it vacated under law,” assured Dulloo, admitting, there is a loss of over Rs 8 crore to the J&K UT exchequer because of delay in fresh tendering process. “
However, the petitioner Sanjay Kumar expressed ignorance about any stay order in favour of Sanyog Enterprises.
Sources said that the then Health Minister Choudhary Lal Singh had allegedly favoured Sanyog Enterprises during the tendering process.
In 2015, the chemists and drug dealers of Jammu protested against the decision of opening shops in government hospitals. Medical shops remained closed in Jammu for over two months but the agitation failed due to differences among protesters .
“Till the time the contempt petition is filed, the Lieutenant Governor should take immediate cognisance of the issue and initiate course correction in the matter,” the petitioner Sanjay Kumar said.
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