Turmoil in House over Med College construction issue

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Puducherry, May 5 (UNI) The issue of construction of a Government Medical College today rocked the territorial Assemby with AIADMK members staging a walkout and CPI charging the Welfare Minister Kandasamy with violating the oath of office.

Replying to a calling attention motion tabled by several members, including Leader of the Opposition A M H Nazeem on the uncertaintity over the construction of the medical college here, Chief Minister N Rangasamy said a decision would be taken after getting the ministerial committee's report constituted, to go into the construction matter.

Establishment of a government medical college was the desire of all and the Planning Commission had given its approval in 2003-04.

The construction work started at the site acquired by the Education department. When the administration sought more funds for the project, the Finance department wanted a fresh project report and the one prepared by a private institution had projected at Rs 853 crore for the next five years, while PWD experts here projected the cost as Rs 739 crore.

Since it was a question whether such a huge amount could be mobilised, the government had constituted a three-member ministerial committee headed by Health Minister E Valsaraj and the committee was yet to submit its report, the Chief Minister said.

Participating in the short discussion allowed by Speaker R Radhakrishnan on the issue, AIADMK member A Anbazhagan said the entire issue had cropped up following differences of opinion between Chief Minister and his cabinet colleagues.

Intervening, Speaker said while the member could seek clarifications, he should refrain from making allegations. With Mr Anbazhagan continuing his speech in the same manner, the speaker invited another member to speak. As the AIADMK leader was on his feet speaking, the speaker ordered disconnection of the mike and announced that the speech of Mr Anbazhagan would not enter the Assembly records.

Protesting against this, Mr Anbazhagan and Mr Om Sakthi Sekhar staged a walkout of the House.

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