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Islamabad

January 13, 2018

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Panic grips staff as SC dissolves PMDC

Panic grips staff as SC dissolves PMDC

Islamabad: Panic gripped the Pakistan Medical and Dental Council (PMDC) employees here after the Supreme Court ordered the immediate dissolution of the current council, the PMDC's highest decision-making body, over the lapse of the ordinance under which it came into existence.

Though the Supreme Court also formed a former judge-led interim committee to manage the council’s affairs, the PMDC staff members remained confused and panicked about what will follow next.

Some even wondered about the legal status of the decisions taken by the 'now-dissolved' council after the lapse of an amended ordinance under which it came into existence. That ordinance was promulgated in August 2015 but lapsed in April last year. Also, parliament neither approved it nor the PMDC (Amendment) Bill 2015 and thus, rendering the elected council an illegal entity.

During the last many years, the PMDC has been rocked by many controversies on administrative, financial and policy matters with the change of guard happening either through ordinances or controversial elections and key officers being reshuffled at short intervals.

Also, this regulator for medical and dental education and practice is also hit by litigation even by own staff members over transfers and postings. 'The News' contacted many senior PMDC staff members to know about the situation within the organisation post Supreme Court move against the council but found the cell phone numbers of many to be switched off and those who took the calls were so panicked and confused that most of them flatly refused to offer comments.

Only a few however, replied and that too off the record.

They said things were highly uncertain especially about what will happen next and that the situation would be little clear after the weekend. Though contested by some, most of them opined that the defunct council's decisions made after the lapse of the 2015 ordinance were of no legal effect.

They also felt that some PMDC officials could be questioned by the interim committee about the irregularities about administrative and financial affairs as well as the recognition of medical colleges. There was no official word on the development from the health service and regulation ministry, which has the administrative control of the PMDC.

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