Kaul Singh takes charge, gets medical education with health
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Former state Congress president Kaul Singh Thakur was on Monday evening allotted the medical education portfolio in the new Himachal Pardesh government. This comes on a day when he assumed charge as the Minister for Health and Family Welfare and Revenue.
Early in the day, Thakur had held an hour-long meeting with Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh. "Health and medical education are are integral departments and have to go together. The portfolio is not new to me, as I had held the departments during my ministerial stint in 1985-1990," he said.
"Portfolio has never been a big issue for me. I had held several important departments during all my earlier terms and also been the Assembly Speaker and PCC president for four years. It was more a question of my dignity and political stature, which I had acquired in and outside Himachal. I have always shown results in my work. Now, since I have been given the task of the health sector, I assure you it will become a model in all terms — infrastructure, services and patient care," he added.
Saying that rural areas were in a state of neglect despite crores funds provided by the Centre under National Rural Health Mission, Thakur said: "Instead of utilising the funds to upgrade facilities and provide doctors in rural areas, the BJP government had diverted those funds to urban hospitals. I will work out a road map to provide better healthcare to the people in rural areas, even if we have to provide more incentives to doctors opting to serve in far-flung areas."
Thakur further said innovative plans are on cards for the two government sector medical colleges — Indira Gandhi Medical College and Dr Rajendra Prasad Medical College in Tanda (Kangra).