Rajendra Prasad Singh chairs the meeting at Dhanbad district collectorate on Thursday. (Gautam Dey)
Health and family welfare minister Rajendra Prasad Singh, during his maiden visit to Dhanbad on Thursday after bagging the Cabinet berth, stressed on filling up healthcare vacancies and beefing up infrastructure.
Singh, who reached Dhanbad at 3pm by road from Bermo, spoke to mediapersons immediately after his arrival at Circuit House.
“Appointment of doctors in hospitals and teachers in medical colleges of the state will be initiated once guidelines and rules are drafted. At present, there is no definite rule in the state for appointing doctors,” the minister said.
On the relevance of the Hirapur campus of Patliputra Medical College and Hospital (PMCH), from where surgery and orthopaedics departments were shifted to Saraidhela, Singh had a solution.
“Sadar Hospital, which functioned during early 1970s from Hirapur, would be revived,” he said.
He added nothing would change overnight but they would “try our best to streamline health services with the cooperation of doctors”.
On an optimistic note, Singh added recent seat hikes at state-run medical colleges — RIMS (Ranchi), MGM (Jamshedpur) and PMCH (Dhanbad) — augured well for the state.
Specifically talking about PMCH, Singh said there was no dearth of funds. “The college has been given around Rs 714 crore in the past three years. We will launch an inquiry into how the money was spent,” the minister said.
Singh later visited Hirapur and Saraidhela campuses. He also held a meeting with health department officials, including civil surgeon A.K. Sinha.
On power, Singh, who also holds energy and finance portfolios, said the state would set up two plants in Garhwa and Patratu with a capacity of 1,320MW. “Jharkhand needs 2,200 MW but gets only 450MW from Tenughat and 150MW from Patratu thermal power units. The rest is bought from outside. Garhwa and Patratu units will help us to do away with dependence on other states,” Singh said.