ESI Medical College and Hospital site shifted;Rourkela cries foul
ROURKELA: Locals under the banner of Joint Action Committee for ESI ( Employees’ State Insurance) Medical College and Hospital staged a demonstration in front of ESI office at Vedvyas here on Tuesday. They also locked the office by emptying it. They were protesting clearance from Union ministry of labour and employment for setting up proposed ESI medical college and hospital in Bhubaneswar instead of Rourkela. The state government has received a letter from Centre in this regard.
The protesters also threatened to launch an indefinite agitation after submitting memoranda to both Central and state governments in this regard on Wednesday.
“We are deeply hurt by the development,” said senior advocate and chairman of the committee M D Parija. “At a recent meeting, we had decided to fight tooth and nail over the issue since Rourkela deserves the project with number of prospective insured persons being highest in Rourkela and its periphery,” Parija argued.
Senior Congress leader and Sundargarh MP Hemananda Biswal also expressed his displeasure over the incident. He has been advocating in favour of Rourkela for the project.
“Several organizations, including the committee members, have contacted me in last couple of days and expressed their resentment over the decision,” Biswal said.
“Since, I believe that the decision has been an unfair one, a delegation from the district, representing cross section of the public under my leadership, will soon meet Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and ventilate its claim,” Biswal added. A parliamentary standing committee on labour and employment, headed by Biswal, had given its recommendation in favour of Rourkela for setting up the medical college and hospital.