High-Level Investigation Committee constituted, to report in 10 days

Shimla: The state government has nullified the claims of any corruption in purchasing Ventilator by the Health Department. Giving reference to a report of Director Health Services, a Health and Family Welfare Department’s Spokesman claimed of full transparency into purchasing Ventilators.

Director, Health Services, in its report, stated that ventilators were purchased to strengthen the health services in the wake of Coronavirus pandemic. A committee under Deputy Director Health Services was constituted on 28 March to suggest technical standards for purchasing the ventilators and on the basis recommendation the purchase of ventilators was made. The Spokesman further claimed

“Committee constituted at Directorate level under the chairmanship of Joint Director Health Services and the process for purchasing the ventilators was started and the rates and standards of ventilators available on GeM Portal were also studied.  It was found by the committee that on 29th March,2020 the rate of ventilator mentioned was Rs. 9.9 lakh. Meanwhile the committee also studied the process of purchase of ventilators adopted by other states and it was observed that the Odisha Medical Supplies Corporation, which is enterprise of the Odisha Government, had purchased the 20 joint ventilators on 20th March, 2020 at the cost of Rs. 1.83 crore, which excluded GST. Keeping the value of time in mind and with the view to strengthen the Health Centres, the committee directed for purchase of 10 ventilators keeping the rate and technical standards into consideration, out of which seven ventilators were received by the Department on 15th April,2020, which were sent to Health institutions with immediately.”  

Director Health Services in his report informed that after that Haryana Medical Supplies Corporation purchased the ventilators on 16th April, 2020 and the amount spent on each ventilator was Rs. 10.29 lakh, which is equal to the amount spent on purchase of entire lot by Directorate of Health Services.  Director Health Services in his report submitted that the cost of these ventilators on GeM Portal was Rs. 10.30 lakh till date.

The ventilators provided to Department include original instruments, medical air processor, basic accessories, adult/ paediatric, Neo Natal implication accessories, optional accessories, ETCO 2 application accessories, SPO 2 application accessories, humidifier with five-year warranty.

Health Directorate claimed of founding no irregularities in the purchase of ventilators.

However, claiming of making the process more transparent it has constituted a High-Level Investigation Committee under the chairmanship Director Industries and Controller of stores. Director Medical Education, Principal IGMC and Deputy Controller Finance and Accounts, Directorate of Medical Education would be other members of the committee. The committee would submit its report within 10 days.      

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Rahul Bhandari is Editor of TheNewsHimachal and has been part of the digital world for last 15 years.