M. Veerappa Moily, Union Minister for Petroleum and Natural Gas has expressed disappointment with the way the Rajiv Gandhi University of Health Sciences has been operating and said the university hasn’t done enough to promote research.

Speaking at the launch of the silver jubilee celebrations of Kadri-based City Hospital Research and Diagnostic Centre here on Saturday, Mr. Moily said the University had not been established just to “collect affiliation fee” but to ensure Karnataka became the front-runner in the field of health education.

“I am not happy that RGUHS has not made key strides in research,” he said.Mr. Moily said that research was fundamental in ensuring that the disparities in health access were reduced. “Though health for all was a common slogan, the country was nowhere close to having achieved that target. Researchers should come forward with cheaper and better treatments that would help the poor,” said Mr. Moily. He said universities of excellence that could foster research across the country were the need of the hour; and this could not be done solely by the government.

Urging the private sector to invest in the training of healthcare professionals and teachers, he said the country would only be able to exploit the “demographic dividend” if quality teachers were available. He said the many surveys that were conducted, when he was the Minister for Corporate Affairs, aimed at finding out the profitability of pharmaceutical drugs. “It was found in the survey that the profit margin for these tablets was more than a thousand per cent.

The poor didn’t need to pay so much for medicines. We have taken steps in this regard and also initiated the distribution of free generic drugs in government hospitals,” he said.