Other States

Dhankhar bats for Ayushman Bharat in Bengal

Governor says matters of health should be ‘kept above politics’

West Bengal Governor Jagdeep Dhankhar on Thursday batted for implementation of Central government’s Ayushman Bharat scheme in the State saying “matters of health should be kept above politics”.

“I have been the Governor [of West Bengal] for less than 100 days and I have received between 2,000 and 3,000 applications from people all over the State seeking medical assistance. I examined all [applications] and found that they were eligible for benefits under the Centre’s Ayushman Bharat scheme,” the Governor said at an event in Kolkata. Mr. Dhankhar said he finds it incongruous why a Central scheme that makes available such a great facility, which has been recognised all over the world, is not being adopted for the benefit of the people of West Bengal.

“I have also come to know that the applicants could have taken benefits of State-run schemes. Despite that if they are writing to the Raj Bhavan then there was something that needed to be looked into,” he said.

The Trinamool Congress government in the State had pulled out of the Ayushman Bharat scheme, stating that the programmes launched by Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee were enough to cater to the health requirements of the people of Bengal.

3,000 applications

“If I can get 3,000 applications in three months, it reflects the state of affairs. I would therefore urge those concerned to work in harmony. Health should be above politics,” the Governor told media persons.

Ever since he assumed charge in July this year, Governor Dhankhar has questioned the functioning of the State government on several issues, including law and order and education system. Though there was a thaw in relations after Mr. Dhankhar visited the residence of Ms. Banerjee on Kali Puja, the comments and counter comments have continued.

Ms. Banerjee refused to make any comments on the Governor’s remarks during a press conference.

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Printable version | Mar 29, 2020 9:23:08 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/dhankhar-bats-for-ayushman-bharat-in-bengal/article29914097.ece

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