Update on ESIC medical college issue: Labour Minister fumbles at Rourkela meet

March 31, 2010 at 9:03 pm Leave a comment

Following is a report from The Pioneer:

The fumbling of State Labour Minister Pushpendra Singh Deo at a Press meet here over the location of the proposed ESIC Medical College and Hospital and the Rourkela district BJD president’s tacit seal of approval of Bhubaneswar being the spot for the institute has raised many an eyebrows here in the district.

After his two-day tour to Rourkela, the Labour and Employment Minister was in trouble at a Press meet when quizzed by the scribes on the hot issue of the proposed ESIC Medical College and Hospital’s venue. He visibly tried to impress that he was interested for Rourkela being the location and the State has been exercising on it, but passed the buck on the Centre saying the latter preferred Bhubaneswar.

“Instead of missing the project forever, the State had no other options than to allot 25 acres in Bhubaneswar within a week and the premium for the land has been received,” Singh Deo said. Justifying his point, the Minister tried to convince showing a news-clip of a vernacular daily published from Bhubaneswar carrying a reply to Rajya Sabha member Pyari Mohan Mohapatra’s question by the Union Labour Minister having said that the IPs of Bhubaneswar and its surrounding are much more than that of Rourkela.

The scribes present contested showing documentary statistics supplied by the Bhubaneswar-based ESIC office on the IPs that Rourkela and its surroundings have and questioned under what circumstances the Rajya Sabha member accepted the figure given by the Union Minister.

When the scribes showed the information furnished by the ESIC Medical Education Cell sought under the RTI (vide letter dt 07.12.2009) clearly mentioned that the Government of Odisha has not proposed Rourkela as a location for ESIC Medical College, the Minister had no other way, but to remain silent. In a bid to control the damage, he said if the Centre considers Rourkela on its own, the State would not hesitate to accept it.

Such an answer boomeranged on him as without a formal proposal from the State to the Centre, the relocation was just impossible following which the Minister was asked to put a fresh proposal before the Centre soon preferring Rourkela. However, intervening, Rourkela district BJD president Ananda Mohanty said there was no need of giving such proposal by the State when Bhubaneswar was already finalised.

Such an unwarranted reply of Mohanty has not only raised eyebrows, but also makes it clear that the BJD does not want Rourkela to be the location of proposed ESIC Medical College, the locals here viewed.

Entry filed under: ESIC Medical College Rourkela, Health Care Facility, Higher Education Zone, Odisha's health care sector, Odisha's health care sector, Region watch, Sundargarh-Rourkela-Panposh-Bonai, Sundergarh.

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