By: Ashwin Mb
AIIMS Act 1956 has been amended by the enactment of AIIMS (Amended) Act, 2012 which stated the establishment of 6 new AIIMS in its first phase: one each in the States of Bihar (Patna), Chhattisgarh (Raipur), Madhya Pradesh (Bhopal), Odisha (Bhubaneswar), Rajasthan (Jodhpur) and Uttarakhand (Rishikesh). All of them were established and started their operations on or before 2013.
Two more AIIMS, one in Rae Bareli (Uttar Pradesh) and Raiganj (West Bengal) had been approved in 2013. Please note that all the developments mentioned so far happened before Narendra Modi led BJP government came to power.
Operations (OPD services) for AIIMS Rae Bareli started in August 2018 while the AIIMS Raiganj has been stopped due to issues with land approval.
After the current government came to power, four more AIIMS were announced during the 2014-15 budget speech. Status of each of the institutions is mentioned below:
Since then, 11 more AIIMS or AIIMS ‘like’ institute has either been announced or approved. However, many of them are at construction stage and none of them have started their operations.
Overall, during the tenure of the present government, only 3 AIIMS have started OPD operations which can be best described as neighborhood clinics or dispensaries and among them, only two have started MBBS courses and it must be noted that the course is being run from temporary campus of other colleges. Given that ‘AIIMS like institute’ needs to fulfill at least basic criteria like fully functioning hospital which delivers high-quality healthcare facilities along with a permanent campus for students, this promise is termed as ‘Inadequate Progress.’