New Delhi: The All India Institute of Medical Sciences(AIIMS) stands challenged in the alleged statement of a physically challenged teacher who has written to the Ministry for Human Resource and Development (MHRD), saying that the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) submitted incorrect information to the National Institutional Ranking Framework (NIRF) on accessibility for the disabled at the institute.
Dr Satendra Singh, a University College of Medical Sciences (UCMS) teacher said that he has been fighting cases to make library and toilet facilities accessible for the disabled in AIIMS. According to Singh, the hospital in its NIRF parameter details has stated that it has ramps/lifts in all its buildings and to further it all, has also claimed the existence of specially designed toilets for the handicap in all buildings and provisions for walking aids and wheelchairs as well, everywhere on the premises. The institution has scored a full 20 points for the same states a disabled Singh.
In 2013, Singh is believed to have had filed a case against the institute with the court of the Chief Commissioner for Persons with Disabilities. The court, in turn, had asked the Medical Council of India (MCI) to issue orders to medical institutions to make their buildings accessible.
“AIIMS then formed a committee, but that has remained only on paper. When I went to AIIMS in 2016, I found many places were still inaccessible. How can they submit such false information?” Singh alleged, while speaking to Indian Express.
Responding to the allegations, AIIMS, Director, Randeep Guleria said, “All hospital areas are accessible. We are working with IIT-Roorkee to make the whole hospital, including labs and new blocks, accessible.”
According to Singh, however, CMET, the BB Dikshit Library, and the auditorium continue to remain inaccessible. “The famed BB Dikshit Library of AIIMS only has stairs and no lift/ramp. The boardroom does not have accessible toilets… Last year, AIIMS admitted lack of accessibility in media reports as well. I had to fight for six years to make my own college accessible and a lift has finally inaugurated this February,” Singh added to Indian Express.
In an earlier story done by the Medical Dialogues team, it was reported that the Human Resource Development Ministry’s national ranking framework (NIRF) which adjudged medical and dental colleges of the country for the first time saw the rankings assume importance as their performance as medical institutions has been linked with the “Institutions of Eminence” scheme. The number of institutions participating in the rankings has risen by over 1,000 this year.
This year for the first time medical and dental colleges which were also ranked by the National Institutional Ranking Framework (NIRF) and the premier healthcare facility of the country, the All India Institue of Medical Science (AIIMS), Delhi being adjudged rank number one institute under medical college category