New Delhi: Alleging that SC/ST and OBC seats in the AIIMS faculty are not being filled up, Opposition SP, BSP and Congress in Rajya Sabha on Wednesday demanded that the on-going faculty appointment process in the top medical institution should be stopped till Government clears the air on the issue.
Raising it during Zero Hour, Ram Gopal Yadav (SP) said he is expressing his unhappiness over the fact that reservation of SC/ST and OBC is not being implemented in faculty recruitment in AIIMS since 1983.
He alleged that the posts are being filled up with candidates from general category in violation of directives of the Supreme Court, SC/ST and OBC Commissions and even the Prime Minister's Office in past.
The SP leader was supported by Deputy Leader of Congress in Rajya Sabha Anand Sharma, Sharad Yadav (JD-U) and Satish Chandra Misra (BSP) all of whom supported his contention that the on-going faculty appointment in AIIMS should be withheld and Government makes a reply on it in Rajya Sabha.
Taking their concerns on board, Deputy Chairman P J Kurien directed the government to come back to the House with the latest status on the issue even as Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi said he will speak to the Health Minister so that solution could be found to this "very sensitive issue".
Ram Gopal Yadav said that around 40 per cent of SC/ST/OBC seats are vacant despite there being competent candidates as they are stated as "not eligible".
AIIMS Director M C Misra was under attack, though the leaders did not name him.
The SP leader said while some appointments from these sections were done during the tenure of the previous Director, the "mindset" is now again back.
The SP leader said that out of the 165 appointments in 2003, the maximum were from the general category and after the backlog in the OBC and SC/ST categories grew, 92 posts were created in 2008 but "not a single appointment" was done.
He said that some appointment in these categories indeed took place in the tenure of the former Director.
"In 2010, the posts of Professors and Assistant Professors were advertised. Not a single appointment was made," he said.
Supporting him, JD (U) chief Sharad Yadav said ever since the new Director has come he is "consciously" not filling the reserved posts citing "non-suitability".
"If this recruitment is not stopped, the SC/ST/OBC will not be able to get appointment in the faculty for 10 years. Stop it or ensure that the norms are implemented," he said.
Congress leader Sharma said government should apprise the House of it and it should not be a case that the appointment process in the AIIMS is completed and then the House is informed of it.
"This interview should be stopped till the government does not come to the House," he said.
The quota row is not new to AIIMS and has kept hitting media headlines from time to time.