The Botswana Health Professions Council (BHPC) has been forced to put its tail between the legs and slink away from bothering Professor Kiran Bhagat.
In 2010 the council deregistered professor Bhagat under claims he was only a physician and not a cardiologist as he said. Bhagat took the matter to court. He lost at the High Court. He appealed and won. Now the BHPC finds itself having to retract all the negative statements it made against the professor. In a statement it issued last week the BHPC says that Bhagat is legally entitled and licensed to practise as a specialist physician and cardiologist.
The statement, it says, is in acquiescence with the order from the Appeals Court on July 29, 2011. At the time he took the BHPC to court, Bhagat also slapped the council and its office bearers with a P9.3 million lawsuit for discrediting his credentials as a cardiologist.
He argued then that BHPC had failed to prove that he was using practicing certificates registered under the names of one Dr
Meanwhile, BHPC called for an investigation by the Directorate of Public Prosecutions and punitive measures to be taken against Bhagat, which included a fine of between P50,000 and P100,000 and a five-year jail term for failing to comply with the laws of Botswana. However, the Appeals Court laid the matter to rest, and the result of its judgment has been the veiled apology by the BHPC
However, even as it slinks away, the BHPC said it was not apologising to Bhagat or the public. "Through the published advert, BHPC was not apologising but complying with the court order," said BHPC's registrar Ogone Tshoswane.
However, the BHPC and its office bearers have some consolation: The Appeals Court scrapped Bhagat's 9.3 million suit. Professor Bhagat had not responded to The Monitor questions at press time.