Union Minister of State for Commerce and Industry D. Purandeswari on Wednesday asked Chief Minister N. Kiran Kumar Reddy to hand over Visakha Institute Medical Sciences (VIMS) to Sri Venkateswara Institute of Medical Sciences (SVIMS) for management and operation.

The first phase of VIMS developed with six blocks and 300 bed capacity at a cost of Rs.40 crore has not been made operational for a long time due to paucity of fund. The proposal for involving private players for its operation was shelved after public outcry.

Originally planned for development on the lines of Nizam’s Institute of Medical Sciences (NIMS) in Hyderabad, VIMS once made operational with multiple super-specialities will be a big boon for patients from North Andhra, Odisha and Chattisgarh.

Ms. Purandeswari in a letter to Mr. Reddy said the people of Visakhapatnam and the Vizag Development Council at a recent meeting favoured SVIMS managed by Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams (TTD)-run VIMS.

VIMS has been allotted 100 acres as part of Health City. It is located near Adarshnagar.

Ms. Purandeswari said due to paucity of funds, equipment and doctors, VIMS had not been made operational. Handing over of VIMS to SVIMS would provide ‘divine help’ to the people of Visakhapatnam and extend blessings of TTD to the region.Plea to CM

Ms. Purandeswari requested Chief Minister N. Kiran Kumar Reddy to examine the plea of hoteliers in the city to raise ceiling on levying of 14 per cent tax on turnover from Rs.1.5 crore to Rs.5 crore.

In a letter to Mr. Reddy based on representation submitted to her by the Hoteliers Association, Visakhapatnam, she said at present four per cent tax was levied on hoteliers who had a turnover below Rs.1.5 crore. If their business exceeded Rs.1.5 crore, they were asked to pay 14 per cent for the entire turnover.

‘Regularise contract workers’

She has urged Union Minister of State for Power Jyotiraditya M. Scindia to pass necessary instructions for regularisation of 16 contract workers of NTPC Simhadri Thermal Power Project.

In a letter to Mr. Scindia, she said the contract workers had served NTPC Simhadri for over 15 years.

She said she had been seeking their regularisation since 2009.