DEHRADUN: The Defense Ministry refusal to take over the two Government Medical Colleges located in Srinagar and Almora has come as a setback for the state government, as it stems from the huge maintenance costs involved in running these medical institutions.However, the government is now making attempts for a defence take over by making a fresh proposal which will be sent to the ministry shortly.
It is reported that last month the Chief Minister, Trivendra Singh Rawat received a communication from the Ministry of Defense expressing its regret about not being able to take over the two medical colleges.
According to information former Defence Minister, Arun Jaitley in a letter to Chief Minister Trivendra Singh Rawat, is believed turned down the government’s proposal. Jaitley expressed the army’s inability to take over the management of the state-run medical college in Srinagar and the other coming up in Almora.
Cabinet Minister Madan Kaushik is said to have confirmed Jaitley expressing the army’s inability to let its doctors manage the two medical colleges. “We will again make a representation to the defence ministry urging the latter to spare its retired medical specialists to run the twin state-run medical colleges,” Kaushik told HT.
3 medical colleges in Dehradun, Srinagar, and Haldwani are functional while a fourth is under construction in Almora.
CM Rawat shortly after taking on the state’s responsibility, at a meeting had asked the army to take over the 2 medical colleges at Srinagar and Almora (under Construction). At this meeting, a decision to plant 4 lakh walnut trees had also been taken in an effort to control migration from hill villages. In this effort, the army had agreed to contribute in terms of manpower and the state government towards technical assistance.
Following this meeting, an inspection team of the Army Medical Corps had visited the Srinagar Medical College in May, to give its opinion in a report form, about the possibilities of a takeover.
The takeover proposal by the Rawat government was a move to boost medical facilities and also deal with the cute doctor shortage confronting the state-run hospitals in hilly areas.
The huge maintenance costs mentioned by the Defense Ministry involve a present annual amount of Rs 150 crore used up by the government medical colleges; with Rs 54 crore being spent on Srinagar Medical College alone, annually.