Tamil Nadu

Controversial ABVP leader made member of AIIMS in Madurai

Shanmugam Subbia  

The Union Health Ministry has appointed controversial oncologist and Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) president Shanmugam Subbiah as a member of the proposed All-India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) in Madurai, triggering strong condemnation from Opposition parties.

DMK president M.K. Stalin, MDMK leader Vaiko and MPs from different parties in the State criticised his appointment.

Dr. Subbiah, professor and head, Department of Surgical Oncology, Government Kilpauk Medical College, Chennai, was in the news a few months ago after he was accused of urinating outside the apartment of an elderly woman, following a row over the parking of his car. CCTV footage of the incident was widely circulated on social media. Dr. Subbiah denied the charges, and the complaint was eventually withdrawn following an alleged compromise.

In a notification on October 15, Sunil Sharma, Joint Secretary, Pradhan Mantri Swasthya Suraksha Yojana, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, mentioned him as one of the members of AIIMS, Madurai.

Mr. Stalin on Wednesday demanded the removal of the oncologist from the AIIMS board and the appointment of MPs from Tamil Nadu in his place. In a statement, he said the AIIMS was set up from the taxpayer’s money and not from the BJP’s party fund. “It is a gross misuse of power to appoint Dr. Subbiah to the position. His appointment is proof that the BJP has no respect for women,” he said.

He said by appointing Tamil Nadu Dr. MGR Medical University Vice-Chancellor Sudha Seshayyan to the AIIMS board, the BJP had actually insulted her.

‘Denigrating institution’

MDMK general secretary Vaiko demanded that Dr. Subbiah be removed from the board, saying his appointment had denigrated a great institution.

Expressing shock, DMK MP Kanimozhi wondered, “Is this an endorsement of his indecent behaviour and an incentive for other BJP cadre to follow suit?”

Virudhunagar MP B. Manickam Tagore (Congress) said he was given the post only because of his association with the RSS.

Madurai MP Su. Venkatesan (CPI-M) questioned whether the new post was given to Dr. Subbiah for his “lowly act”.

Villupuram MP Ravikumar (VCK) said his appointment was an insult to women. TNCC president K.S. Alagiri demanded Dr. Subbiah’s immediate removal from the committee.

Among other members are the Director General of Health Services, the Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare; the Director of the Institute, and the Chief Secretary of Tamil Nadu.

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Printable version | Nov 24, 2020 3:21:16 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/tamil-nadu/controversial-abvp-leader-made-member-of-aiims-in-madurai/article32967574.ece

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