State yet to transfer land to Centre for AIIMS

For 17 RTI queries, the Dept. of Health and Family Welfare gave only a brief reply

The State government has not yet transferred the land to the Central government for setting up All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) at Thoppur in Madurai, reveals a Right to Information (RTI) Act reply obtained by an activist, R. Pandiaraja.

The Prime Minister laid the foundation stone for the ₹1,264-crore project in January 2019. It was scheduled to be completed in 45 months since the commencement of construction work. “Although almost two years have passed since the laying of the foundation stone, there has not been much progress on the project,” Mr. Pandiaraja said.

When he had asked 17 questions regarding funding, design and deadline of the project, the Department of Health and Family Welfare gave only a brief reply. The RTI reply stated that construction work would commence only after the loan was sanctioned by Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA). The process was on and details of the loan agreement could be provided only after the loan was signed, it added.

JICA conducted a preparatory survey at the site in Thoppur in February. An RTI reply obtained by Mr. Pandiaraja in August said that the loan agreement was likely to be signed with JICA by December 2020. “The State government can intervene to address the issue by funding the project,” he said.

Madurai MP Su. Venkatesan accused the State government of showing a lackadaisical attitude towards setting up AIIMS. He said that he had written to the Chief Minister in June 2019 regarding transfer of land to the Central government. “The main problem is that there is no official appointed by the State government to supervise the project,” he said.

He also said that setting up AIIMS at Jammu was announced at the same time when the announcement for Madurai was made. “Admissions to medical courses in Jammu AIIMS commenced this year. The Tamil Nadu government was urged to commence medical admissions for Madurai AIIMS this year by setting up a temporary building with a hospital. However, it has not taken any steps,” he said.

People’s Movement for AIIMS Madurai chief coordinator V.S. Manimaran said that if the State government was sure of receiving funds from JICA, then it must commence floating tenders for the construction of AIIMS without delay.

Source: Read Full Article