You are taking over as the AIIMS director at a time when the institutes image has taken a beating. Do you think you have a tougher job at hand than your predecessors?
I cannot comment about what other directors faced during their tenure but this situation is definitely very challenging. I need to get faculty members,employees,doctors,paramedics and resident doctors together to improve the institutes image.
What does your appointment mean for the institute?
I have been waiting for five months to be appointed to this post. (But) unfortunately the institute is suffering at this time mainly due to infighting between different groups,which is affecting the standards.
Do you have any thrust areas in which you would want to focus?
I want doctors to start focussing more on research activities. The institute has been in news for all the wrong reasons in recent times and it would be nice if the brilliant minds here get back to what they do best. The institute has a lot to offer in terms of stem cell research and that would be my priority.
Your comments about the suspension of a senior surgeon at the institute?
It is unfortunate but I would not like to comment on the issue. But I will look into the matter and take it to its logical conclusion. Our focus should be on improving patient care,research and teaching standards in the institute. Criticism is unavoidable when running an institute which caters to such a large number of patients. But our focus should be on improvement,and not just running down every effort made by the institute.