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Hope for AIIMS clone in Tripura

Agartala, Aug. 3: Tripura is likely to get a well-equipped hospital modelled on the lines of All India Institute of Medical Science (AIIMS) in Delhi.

The issue was raised by the state’s health minister Badal Chowdhury in a meeting with Union minister for health and family planning Harsh Vardhan and senior officials of the health department on July 31.

“We did raise the issue and requested the Union health minister to take steps to expedite the process of setting up an AIIMS-like hospital in Tripura in keeping with the announcement made by Union finance minister Arun Jaitley in his budget speech,” said Chowdhury in an interaction with reporters last night.

He said Vardhan had asked him to acquire 200 acres of land and ensure better transport and communication facilities, promising central help in this regard.

“Finding 200 acres in and around our capital town Agartala will be difficult but we have started looking,” said Chowdhury.

Chowdhury also asked for funds to implement central schemes like the National Rural Health Mission and Prime Minister’s health scheme as well as to improve infrastructure at the state, district and subdivisional-level hospitals.

“We need better infrastructure and I have requested the Union health minister to sanction funds.”

Among his top priorities was the state’s scheme of setting up 15 more primary health centres in malaria-prone areas of the state in Dhalai and North Tripura districts.

He also requested Vardhan to relax norms so that more primary health centres can be set up in the state in view of the malarial deaths in Tripura over the past two months. “According to official records, 76 people have died of malaria.”

Apart from the health-related issues, Chowdhury requested the Union health minister to arrange 15 more seats this year for Tripura from the central quota so that students can be admitted.

“A problem has arisen in the matter of admission to the Agartala Government Medical College because of a recent order passed by Tripura High Court. The court order can be complied with if we get at least 15 more seats from the central quota.”

Chowdhury added that Vardhan has not given any commitment on granting more seats but said he would look into the matter.