AIIMS teachers write to Health Minister, say no to direct hiring

In a letter to Health Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad, the Faculty Association of All India Institute of Medical Sciences has requested that a recent advertisement for the direct recruitment of professors in the institute be withdrawn as it "has the potential to disintegrate AIIMS faculty into pieces and create a vicious atmosphere of mistrust and infighting."

The move to recruit professors directly, the letter argues, would upset the seniority list and trigger a fresh exodus of professors from the premier institute. As many as 50 senior professors have left AIIMS in the last five years.

Even though the advertisement said professors currently under the Assessment Promotion Scheme (APS) at AIIMS can also apply for direct recruitment, lateral entry at a senior level would only serve to complicate already seniority issues, claims the letter signed by Dr Manoj Singh, president of FAIIMS and Dr Lalit Dar, general secretary.

The Valiathan Committee had said direct recruitment of professors should only be in emerging fields where the requisite expertise does not exist within the institute and that too with the consent of the Director Academic Committee and the Governing Body. Citing this report, FAIIMS has professed the opinion that new seats should be created at the assistant professor level rather than at the professor level.

"There are nearly 100 additional professors eligible for promotion to the grade of professor by the APS from July 2011/July 2012. These individuals will lose seniority if their APS is not held prior to the direct recruitment of professors," the letter says.

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