A senior resident doctor of All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) Delhi, Srinivas Rajkumar, the whistle-blower who raised concerns over the quality of N95 masks and other components of the Personal Protective Equipments being provided to healthcare workers (HCWs), was issued a show-cause notice on Monday, June 1.
"The N-95 we received was merely labelled N-95 but were not actually N-95 masks," he had said.
The doctor has been asked to respond by Wednesday, to the notice that claims that his unsubstantiated statements made through a tweet could damage the morale of the health workers and also question their safety.
The notice says that Dr Rajkumar has provided no evidence to support his claims. "Despite access to intuitional mechanisms for grievance redressal, has chosen to voice his claim on a public platform and sought media visibility to malign the institution… this has been viewed seriously," it read.
"Accordingly, Dr Srinivas is here directed to show cause, why action should not be taken against him breach of CCS (CCA) rules by 5 pm, June 3, failing which will be presumed that he has nothing to say in his support and disciplinary action will be taken," it further read.
"We've been writing letters to the administration for months on different issues. We complained about sanitation issues, hostels, PPEs, masks. When a healthcare worker died here, we wrote demanding the hostel superintendent's resignation," the 33- year old doctor had earlier said.
In March, the Resident Doctor's Association had complained about inadequate PPEs in the hospital and asked for masks and sanitisers in hostels.
After the death of a mess worker in a doctors' canteen due to COVID-19, the RDA had accused the administration of neglecting its concerns.
On April 6, it wrote to Prime Minister Narendra Modi on issues pertaining to PPEs, masks, testing equipment and quarantine facilities.
Srinivas who has been working at AIIMS for past six years believes that the administration is finding reasons to terminate him. "I've never felt such hostility, but I stand by my statement," he said.
"Intense scrutiny of an elected representative's personal tweets raises fear of Orwellian surveillance state during a pandemic... Not a time to blame the government. Our feedback is for improvement for the wellbeing of healthcare workers," Dr Rajkumar hadsaid.
Also Read: Duty Over Self: AIIMS Doctor Removes Protective Gear To Save Patient's Life, Sent To Quarantine For 14 Days