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Well being Ministry raises alert over Covid group vacancies: ‘Acute stress’

THE Union Well being Ministry has raised concern over vacancies in 9 senior officer posts in its Covid group, saying this had put it below “acute stress”.
In a letter dated October 13 to Deepti Umashankar, Institution Officer and Extra Secretary, DoPT, Well being Secretary Rajesh Bhushan stated, “As you’re conscious that despite the fact that the pandemic of Covid-19 is declining, nonetheless we can not let our guard down. At this important juncture, the Ministry of Well being and Household Welfare is required to place in additional efforts to make sure full preparedness throughout the nation. Vacant positions of 1 Joint Secretary and eight DS (Deputy Secretaries) / Administrators have put this ministry below acute stress.”

Bhushan sought “early and well timed motion” to refill the prevailing vacancies “and in addition the vacancies arising within the coming weeks”.
That is the second time in two months that Bhushan has highlighted vacancies within the Well being Ministry. On August 12, he had written to the DoPT (Division of Personnel and Coaching) in regards to the unfilled posts of extra secretary, joint secretary, director and deputy secretary below the Central Staffing Scheme of the Central Secretariat Companies (CSS) within the Well being Ministry.

Requested in regards to the letter, a Well being Ministry official, who refused to be named, stated: “Every ministry offers the listing of vacancies each month to the DoPT. In any other case how would they fill the vacancies?”

Along with his October 13 letter, Bhushan shared an inventory of 11 officers who’ve moved out of the ministry or are about to take action. On the highest is Vandana Gurnani, Extra Secretary and Mission Director, Nationwide Well being Mission, who went on one-year examine depart in September 2021. The others embrace Joint Secretary Nipun Vinayak, who sorted oxygen provide throughout the extreme Covid second wave and was repatriated prematurely to his Maharashtra cadre on August 31; and Joint Secretary Lav Agarwal, who has been the face of the ministry at Covid briefings and completes his tenure with the Well being Ministry on November 28.

Bhushan additionally named Bindu Tewari, an IRSME (Indian Railway Service of Mechanical Engineers) official working within the Ministry as Director, who was repatriated to her mum or dad cadre on July 7; and N Yuvaraj, who was moved out as Director from the Well being Ministry to Joint Secretary within the Division of Prescription drugs.
In addition to them, Mahatme Sandeep Namdeo, posted within the Ministry as Deputy Secretary, is now Personal Secretary to Ashwini Vaishnaw, Minister for Communication; Yatish S G, one other Deputy Secretary-level officer, was completely repatriated to his mum or dad IRTS cadre on September 13; and Vidushi Chaturvedi, Director within the Well being Ministry, is “awaiting approval” for her choice as Deputy Director Common within the UIDAI.

CSS officers Vandana Jain and S Ok Jha, each Administrators within the Ministry, have gotten promotions as Joint Secretaries. Whereas Jain is Joint Secretary within the Well being Ministry, Jha has moved to the Division of Income, relieved with impact from August 26.
One other CSS officer and Director, Well being Ministry, N B Mani, died throughout the second Covid wave.

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