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'Appointment of Ramadoss as Prez of AIIMS illegal'

Written by: Staff

New Delhi, Jul 7: Terming the appointment of Health Minister Anbumoni Ramadoss as President of AIIMS ''illegal'' PanIIT Foundation for Rural Transformation (PiFort) in a petition to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has charged the government with eroding the autonomy of the premier institute.

The petition demanded the removal of the minister as president of the institute and called for the appointment of a competent scientist or visionary to the post.

The petition further argued that ''combining the two positions of Minister and Head of Institute leads to day to day interference in the affairs of the Institute thereby completely subverting the norms of good governance and eminence.'' ''The entire knowledge community is shocked in the manner in which the Health Minister has tried to undo the autonomy given to the AIIMS not just by a statute but by the will of our founding fathers like Pandit Jawahar Lal Nehru, Dr J C Ghosh and Dr B C Roy,'' the petition added.

''The AIIMS by the Act of Parliament was made an Institute Par-excellence to develop patterns of teaching in undergraduate and postgraduate medical education so as to demonstrate a high standard of medical education to all medical colleges,'' the petition said.

The special statute was made by Parliament and gives necessary autonomy to the AIIMS, it added.

The All India Institute of Medical Sciences Act specifically bars a Minister from becoming a member leave alone its' President, it noted.

''The AIIMS must remain an independent entity as it was contemplated by Parliament. Nowhere the intent of Parliament at the time of making the Act was to make the Health Minister the President of the Institute, otherwise it could have been easily specified in the Act itself, much like the manner in which the composition of all the other members of the Institute has been defined in the Act,'' it noted.


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