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Haryana: How Health Minister & CMO Dispute Resolved After 64 Days, Inside Story of New Appointment of Dr. Sonia Trikha Khullar

Dr. Sonia Trikha Khullar took voluntary retirement on 11 December from the post of Director General of Health Services
Indian Masterminds Stories

On 12 December, when the Manohar Lal Khattar-led Haryana government appointed Dr. Sonia Trikha Khullar as the new member of the Haryana Public Service Commission (HPSC), they also finally resolved a 64 day-old dispute.

The dispute between Haryana Home & Health Minister Anil Vij and Chief Principal Secretary to CM, Mr. Rajesh Khullar, an IAS officer of 1988 batch, was finally resolved after long 64 days. Dr. Sonia Trikha Khullar is the wife of Mr. Rajesh Khullar.

Following the conditions laid down by the Home and Health Minister in the meeting held with the CM on December 7, Dr. Sonia Trikha Khullar took voluntary retirement on 11 December from the post of Director General of Health Services.

After that, Ms. Trikha was sworn in as member of the HPSC on 12 December in the presence of the CM and the Governor. Governor Bandaru Dattatreya administered the oath of office, allegiance, and secrecy at Raj Bhavan.

Now, DG Health Dr. RS Poonia will look after the work of the health department as HOD.

Two meetings were held between CM Khattar and Minister Anil Vij to settle the health department dispute. First, on November 15, there was a long discussion between Chief Minister Manohar Lal and Health Minister Anil Vij at the Chief Minister’s residence, in which Mr. Vij presented the matter with complete facts.

Even after this, when the dispute was not resolved, Mr. Vij talked about leaving the health department. After the matter made headlines, the Chief Minister again held a meeting with Mr. Vij on 3 December.

Sources said that the main reason for Mr. Vij’s displeasure is the review meeting of the Health Department organized by the Chief Minister’s Office (CMO) on October 5. This meeting was called by Chief Principal Secretary to the Chief Minister Rajesh Kumar Khullar.

The then Director General of Health Dr. Sonia Trikha Khullar and all the heads of departments were present in this meeting held at PWD Rest House, Panchkula.

The CMO said that the purpose of this review meeting was to collect information about the pending works of the health department and complete them. Health Minister Anil Vij was not present in this review meeting.

The news of the ongoing tussle between Anil Vij and CMO officers had also reached the party high command. Mr. Vij was the first to approach the high command through former Haryana BJP president OP Dhankhar.

On 30 October, Anil Vij met RSS state pracharak Vijay Kumar in Ambala and discussed the matter. About 10 hours after this meeting, on the late evening of 30 October, Mallika Nadda, wife of BJP National President JP Nadda, reached Anil Vij’s house in Ambala as well.

Not only this, sources said that the issue became so big, that former Chief Minister and Leader of Opposition Bhupendra Singh Hooda and other opposition MLAs had talked about raising this matter in the Assembly. There were continuous taunts being made on the government by the opposition parties. That is why, the state government quickly resolved this controversy.


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