The Delhi High Court Wednesday dismissed a petition challenging the appointment of the union health minister as president of the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), saying the government has the power to do so. A division bench headed by Chief Justice M.K. Sarma said: "The issue you are raising cannot be entertained by us as it has already been decided by this court and also by the Supreme Court. The constitution of AIIMS has the provision that the minister would act as the president of the institute and chairman of its governing body."
Petitioner and Advocate Lily Thomas had sought a court direction to the government that Health Minister A. Ramadoss had been illegally holding the post of AIIMS president.
She had contended that previous judgements of the court had to be reconsidered in the light of this provision of the constitution, which was not considered earlier.
During the establishment of AIIMS, the parliament had framed a law saying that the health minister would be its ex-officio president.
AIIMS authorities have been protesting that the minister had been interfering in the internal affairs of the hospital and trying to "ruin" it.
Ramadoss and AIIMS Director P. Venugopal have been at loggerheads over the administrative matters of the institute and the situation reached a flashpoint during the anti-quota movement last year.