A TROUBLED working relationship between two Bolton doctors has been laid bare as it spilled over into the High Court.

In the latest twist in the Shanti Medical Practice saga, GPs Dr Anant Prasad and Dr Shaista Hanifa, who were once partners at the surgery, were again at loggerheads, this time in court over potential liabilities incurred during their acrimonious partnership.

The court heard how even before their working partnership was finalised in November 2013, the relationship between the two was “not a good one”.

The hearing, brought by Dr Prasad, took place in February, with a written judgement issued this week.

It states: “The claimant and the defendant, as the two principal protagonists, were the two most important witnesses in the case.

“They were giving evidence about their dealings over an extended period from 2002 through to 2017, in circumstances where from around 2011 onwards they were in dispute about key aspects of their relationship and from around 2015 increasingly hostile towards each other on a personal, professional and business level.

“They have both invested significant time and money in this litigation and believe that the other has behaved improperly in many respects.”

The under-fire surgery went into special measures under the partnership and was ordered to pay out a total of nearly £150,000 after firing three of its reception staff for whistleblowing.

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Bailiffs show up at Shanti Medical Centre to collect £330,000 debts

The trio were dismissed after after contacting the General Medical Council about concerns about Dr Hanif.

The on-going saga eventually saw Bolton GP Federation step in and take control of the medical centre when the partnership between the two was dissolved.

In February, Dr Prasad took Dr Hanifa to court to protect himself from further financial fall-out from the working relationship over costs that might arise in the future.

In 2018 the surgery was visited by high court sheriffs, in an attempt to claim £331,000 owed after the unfair dismissal, with the increase due to interest accrued.

The judgement states: “It had been hoped that entry into the partnership deed would improve matters, but it did not, and by 2017 the relationship had broken down irretrievably.”

Dr Prasad won his fight to “indemnify the partnership against its liability to three dismissed employees which it has paid” and that neither Dr Hanif or the partnership has any “legal or equitable interest in the practice property” ­— Shanti Medical Centre in St Helens Road.

In the summary, the judgement stated: “Suitable directions will also have to be given to ensure that this long-running partnership dispute is brought to an end as soon as possible and without unneccessary further financial outlay”.