Assam gets North East’s first AIIMS

Prime Minister Narendra Modi laid the foundation stone and dedicated to the nation projects worth more than Rs 3,400 crore.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Assam Governor Gulab Chand Kataria visit the AIIMS Guwahati after its inauguration. (Photo | PTI)
Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Assam Governor Gulab Chand Kataria visit the AIIMS Guwahati after its inauguration. (Photo | PTI)

GUWAHATI: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Friday inaugurated AIIMS Guwahati, the Northeast’s first such facility.

He laid the foundation stone and dedicated to the nation projects worth more than Rs 3,400 crore. The other projects included a medical college each in Nagaon, Nalbari and Kokrajhar and Assam Advanced Health Care Innovation Institute. 

He also launched the ‘Aapke Dwar Ayushman’ campaign by distributing Ayushman Bharat Pradhan Mantri Jan Arogya Yojana cards to eligible beneficiaries.

The PM used the occasion to go hard at the Opposition, saying “some people” get disturbed when he talks about the various development initiatives of his government.

“We find a new disease nowadays. Wherever in the country I go and talk about development that has taken place in the past nine years, some people get disturbed. They complain that they do not get credit despite ruling the country for decades,” Modi told a gathering after inaugurating the AIIMS at Changsari on the outskirts of Guwahati.

He recalled how the hunger for taking credit and a sense of lording over the masses in the previous regimes had made the nation helpless.

The PM said the previous governments had created a feeling of alienation towards the Northeast and deemed it too far from the mainland but the NDA comes with a service-oriented belief which makes the Northeast approachable.

Referring to the long-festering challenges of the region, he said development becomes impossible when the politics of dynasty, regionalism, corruption and instability start dominating. He said this happened with the country’s healthcare system. 

The PM said the policies of the previous governments had created a scarcity of doctors and medical professionals and erected a wall before quality health service. He said the NDA worked on a huge scale to boost medical infrastructure and medical professionals.

He said the first AIIMS was established in the 1950s but no effort was made thereafter to open AIIMS in other parts of the country. He said former PM Atal Bihari Vajpayee had initiated a process but it did not move in subsequent years. He said it was only after 2014 that these issues were addressed by the present government. 

He disclosed the NDA started work on 15 AIIMS and that treatments and medical studies have already begun in most of them. 

“AIIMS Guwahati too is an example of the fact that our government fulfils all resolutions,” the PM said, adding, “We are moving forward with the mantra of India’s development through the development of the Northeast.”

The AIIMS Guwahati, built at a cost of over Rs 1,120 crore, is a state-of-the-art hospital with a capacity of 750 beds. It will have an annual intake capacity of 100 MBBS students. 

Later, speaking at a programme marking the platinum jubilee celebration of the Gauhati High Court, Modi said the aspirations of Indians in the 21st century are unbounded and the judiciary, as a pillar of democracy, has a strong and sensitive role to play in meeting these aspirations. 

Underlining the combined responsibility of the legislature, judiciary and executive, he gave the example of the abolition of outdated laws. 

“We repealed thousands of archaic laws, reduced compliances,” he said, adding some 2,000 such laws and more than 40,000 compliances have been discontinued. This, along with the decriminalization of many provisions of business, has reduced the number of cases in the courts, he said.

“The Gauhati High Court has its own heritage and identity,” the PM said as he noted the scope of its jurisdiction is the largest as it also caters to the neighbouring states of Arunachal Pradesh and Nagaland.

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