NEW DELHI: Coalition compulsions have claimed yet another victim! The dream of ailing Congress veteran Priyaranjan Dasmunshi to set up a new medical institution on the lines of the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) in his former constituency of Raigunj in West Bengal got deflated with the UPA government deciding to shift the proposed institute to Trinamool Congress stronghold of Kalyani.
Trinamool Congress leader and West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee wants the institute shifted to Kalyani, a satellite city near Kolkata. And the Congress seems to be in a mood to oblige. The Parliament was informed accordingly last week. However, Priyaranjan’s wife Deepa Dasmunshi who currently represents Raigunj is not ready to give in without a fight.
“The Prime Minister and the Union Health Minister are very positive. But Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee is not. Earlier, we had to fight with the Left Front. Now we are being treated the same way,” Deepa said.
The Centre will pick up the bill of `900 crore to build the facility, while the state government has to shell out Rs 15 crore to acquire 110 acres of land needed for the project.
It took three years for the proposal to reach the Union Cabinet from the Health Ministry and finally got a nod in February 2009.
As soon as Mamata came to power in May 2011, she withdrew the no objection certificate given to the super-speciality medical facility by the previous Left Front Government in July 2010. In a letter to the Union Health Minister dated June 2, 2011, she requested the location of the hospital project be shifted from Rajgunj to Kalyani and cited non-availability of land as one of the reasons.