While appealing to the residents to change their “riwaaz” (custom) and give BJP a second term in the upcoming elections, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said Wednesday that the previous governments only laid foundation stones and forgot about the actual projects once the elections were over.
The PM, who was in Himachal Pradesh to inaugurate the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) in Bilaspur, also sounded the poll bugle – literally.
At a rally, Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur presented the PM with a “Ransingha”, a trumpet-like traditional instrument. In a show of strength, Modi played it and said, “This marks the beginning of each future victory.”
He said that on the auspicious occasion of Vijaya Dashami, people in the region have been gifted development projects worth hundreds of crores and dual gifts of education and health. He was addressing the meeting at the Luhnu ground after inaugurating the AIIMS hospital and a hydro engineering college, the foundation stones for which were laid by him in 2017.
“In the last eight years, there is a new thought process. For the longest time, there was just one university. Even in terms of healthcare, people had to go to Chandigarh or Delhi. No other option. The double-engine sarkaar has given the state new infrastructure at every step,” the PM said.
The AIIMS-Bilaspur is a sign of change and will also be known as ‘green AIIMS’, the PM said. “It is a culture of our party that once we lay the foundation stone of a project, we also inaugurate. With us, there is no scope of delay or dilemma,” Modi said, slamming the Opposition for photo ops and lack of development in the state.
He added that development in the state has been possible because its people voted the BJP to power both at Centre and in the state. Modi began his speech with the slogan “Jai Mata Naina Deviji”, the temple to which is located in Bilaspur district itself. He also extended Dussehra greetings.He said Himachal Pradesh plays a crucial role in ‘Rashtra Raksha’ (national security) and now with the new AIIMS in Bilaspur, it will also play a pivotal role in ‘Jeevan Raksha’ (saving lives).
Modi said that beyond medical colleges, Himachal is also expanding its base in terms of medicines and drugs. The PM said that only three states in the country have been selected for building a bulk drug park, and these include Himachal Pradesh. The state is also one of the four selected for a medical device park, he added. “Himachal has a lot of scope for tourism. The natural beauty and clean air will attract people from across the world. People can come here and enjoy natural beauty and avail of medical facilities at the same time,” the PM said.
Modi congratulated Himachal for becoming the first state to formulate a drone policy. Drones will be used for transportation of medicines and other goods, he added.
BJP national president J P Nadda and Union Minister Anurag Thakur were also present at the rally.Modi’s earlier appearance in Mandi was limited to a virtual address due to bad weather.
AIIMS-Bilaspur is a state-of-the-art hospital with 18 specialty and 15-20 super specialty departments along with 18 modular operation theatres. The 750-bed hospital will also have 64 ICU beds. The entire hospital has been built at a cost of Rs 1,470 crore.
Spread over 247 acres, the hospital is equipped with 24 hours emergency and dialysis facilities, modern diagnostic machines like ultrasonography, CT scan, MRI, etc., Amrit Pharmacy and Jan Aushadhi Kendra and also a 30-bedded AYUSH block.
The hospital has also set up a Centre for Digital Health to provide health services in the inaccessible tribal areas of Himachal Pradesh.
An institute of national importance was officially approved, under Phase-V of the Pradhan Mantri Swasthya Suraksha Yojana (PMSSY), by the Union Cabinet on December 4, 2019.
The institute was approved to be established on National Highway 205 (Shimla-Kangra/Shimla Ghumarwin road) in the village of Kothipura in Bilaspur. AIIMS-Bilaspur is set up with the objective of correcting regional imbalances in the availability of affordable/reliable tertiary healthcare services, besides augmenting facilities for quality medical education in the country.