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Allot funds for Madurai AIIMS in ensuing Union Budget: CPI(M)

Centre warned of massive protests in southern districts, if it failed

January 24, 2023 07:50 pm | Updated January 26, 2023 10:22 am IST - MADURAI

Cadre of CPI (M) and various political parties protesting against the Centre for delay in allocating funds for AIIMS buildings in Madurai on January 24, 2023

Cadre of CPI (M) and various political parties protesting against the Centre for delay in allocating funds for AIIMS buildings in Madurai on January 24, 2023 | Photo Credit: G. Moorthy

The Communist Party of India (Marxist) has warned the Centre of a massive protest in southern districts of Tamil Nadu if it fails to allocate its share of funds for the buildings for the AIIMS, Madurai, in the ensuing Union Budget.

Speaking at a protest, named ‘Where is our AIIMS?’, organised by the party, State secretary K. Balakrishnan said the buildings were in an advanced stage for the AIIMS projects that the Centre announced after the foundation was laid by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in Madurai in 2019.

He wondered whether the Centre could not spare just ₹350 crore (its contribution) for the project when it had given surety for ₹23,000 crore for a loan to Sri Lanka.

“The Centre has waived of ₹10.75 lakh crore in corporate loans in the last eight years. This shows the funds are not a constraint for the Centre, but it is betraying Tamil Nadu,” he said. If the funds were allotted on time, the AIIMS building would have come up, Mr. Balakrishnan said.

Pointing out that the Sethusamudram Shipping Canal Project was also stalled by the BJP in the name of protecting Ram Sethu, Mr. Balakrishnan said the Centre had clarified that it had no evidence to show that Ram Sethu was constructed by Lord Rama. “This is now evident that the BJP does not want any development work for Tamil Nadu,” he said.

By blocking the BBC documentary on the Gujarat riots, the BJP could not hide the facts of the massacre, and these facts would reach every one during the Lok Sabha election, Mr. Balakrishnan said.

Congress MP B. Manickam Tagore said the construction of the Madurai AIIMS was unlikely to begin in the next one year. “The administrative building is yet to be constructed, even four years after the project was announced,” he said.

Had the Centre released its contribution, the building could have come up with the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) releasing its share in regular instalments, the Virudhunagar MP said.

Madurai MP Su. Venkatesan said the students of the Madurai AIIMS who were accommodated at the Ramanathapuram Government Medical College would complete their course in 2026 without seeing their college building at all.

Ramanathapuram MP Navas K. Kani and MLAs G. Thalapathi (DMK) and M. Boominathan (MDMK) were among those who spoke at the protest.

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