March 19, 2021 4:19:58 am
The fees charged from students in
government medical colleges in the state is less than that charged by a play school, said Deputy Chief Minister Nitin Patel, who also hold Health portfolio, on Thursday during the Question Hour which was later suspended.
“The state government spends between Rs 30-40 lakh to help a medical student become a doctor. The fee that we take is just Rs 25,000 which is less than those for play school,” said Patel in reply to a question asked by Congress MLA Kantibhai Sodha Parmar.
The minister said that the bond amount that the government collects from doctors who refuses to serve in rural areas after completing their studies has also been raised by the BJP government. “Earlier the bond amount was just Rs 10,000. After I took charge, we became stricter and raised it to Rs 20 lakh for MBBS and Rs 40 lakh for post-graduation. Due to this doctors have become available and we have started getting good doctors in primary health centres and civil hospitals,” he added.
“I had earlier thought about not permitting doctors to practice in the state if they failed to fulfil the conditions of their bond. But due to prevailing laws and court judgments, no registered MBBS doctor can be stopped from practice. The state government has the right to only collect the amount promised as bond,” Patel said adding that Rs 19 crore was collected as bond from erring doctors.
However, the Gujarat Assembly had to be suspended for the first time during the ongoing Budget session after a war of words between ruling BJP and the opposition Congress, broke out during discussions on supplementary questions on the same topic.
When president of Gujarat Pradesh Congress Committee (GPCC) Amit Chavda claimed that Nitin Patel had laid the foundation stone of a civil hospital in Anand district which was yet to be built, the minister made some remarks which was later expunged from the records of the Assembly by Speaker Rajendra Trivedi. “I strictly deny the claim made by Amitbhai. I never laid the foundation stone of the hospital,” Patel added. The Speaker had to suspend the Assembly for the remainder of the Question Hour after chaos reigned on both sides.
In the written replies submitted by the Gujarat government, a total of 2,269 doctors were appointed by the Gujarat government in the last two years after they passed MBBS from the state government colleges. Of these, only 373 doctors reported to work, while the state government initiated measures to collect the bond amount from the remaining doctors.
The government stated that during this two year period, only Rs 12.08 crore of bond amount has been collected from 244 doctors who did not report to work, while Rs 83.6 crore is yet to be collected.
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