Bhubaneswar: The Centre was for setting up of new branches of All India Institutes of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) early, Union health minister Ghulam Nabi Azad said on Thursday and asked the Orissa government to remove hurdles in the building of the branch of the premier institute here.
“I will review the progress in all the new AIIMS projects, including the one proposed to be constructed here, to ensure these are ready in about three years. I will also speak to the construction agency,” he told reporters here.
Claiming that the steps taken by the state government for the ambitious Rs820 crore project were slow and sluggish and though the detailed project report for the Orissa AIIMS was ready, proper land demarcation was yet to be completed.
The state should take quick steps to remove the high power transmission line at the site, Azad said unauthorised structures should also removed and a small village relocated.
On its part, the Centre was taking steps to bring momentum to the project, he said adding he had spoken to environment and forests minister Jairam Ramesh about the need for clearance to about 90 acres of the proposed AIIMS site here.
“Since Orissa badly needs an AIIMS, we are taking all steps to ensure that the project becomes operational at the earliest,” he said.
Azad said that to improve health care facilities in Orissa, both the Centre and the state government must initiate steps for early completion of AIIMS here.
Maintaining that the Centre had always given attention to Orissa, he said the state was provided adequate funds under National Rural Health Mission for strengthening health infrastructure, procurement of equipment and improving staff at various levels.
During 2005-2009 Rs1221 crore was given to Orissa but the state was able to utilise only Rs900 crore. Rs362 crore has been provided to it during 2009-10, he said.