Baripada Medical College row: Odisha writes to SC committee for obtaining LoP

Bhubaneswar: The ongoing tug of war between Odisha and Medical Council of India (MCI) over delay in issuance of permission to start academics in Pandit Raghunath Murmu Medical College, Baripada has now got murkier.

Health and Family Welfare Department on Monday held MCI responsible for not taking steps to issue Letter of Permission (LOP) for commencement of 100 undergraduate intakes from 2017-18 academic sessions.

In a letter to  Secretary, Supreme Court  Mandate Oversight committee, Shesh Kumar, Odisha Health Secretary P.K. Meherda clarified that Odisha had earlier sought LoP for two medical colleges—Pandit Raghunath Murmu Medical College, Baripada and Saheed Laxman Nayak Medical College and Hospital, Koraput in June 2016.

The permissions for establishment of New Medical Colleges were sought under Central Sponsored Scheme (CSS).

MCI team had subsequently taken stock of infrastructure, construction works and other facilities at both the upcoming medical colleges in December last year.

Odisha Government, on the other hand, claimed that all the prescribed guidelines by the MCI have been complied and a report has been submitted to the Centre.

Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik had, during his meeting with Union Health Minister J.P. Nadda, urged for letter of permission (LOP) for the two medical colleges at Baripada and Koraput for starting the first batch of admission from  2017-18 session.

Another reminder in this regard was also sent by the State Government on April 27 for MCI inspection and LOP.

In its argument, Odisha government has contested that Mayurbhanj district under which the Baripada medical college falls has 58.7 percent tribal population.

Hence, a medical college in the area is highly essential for overall health and socio-economic development of the poor people including from neighbouring states of West Bengal and Jharkhand.

“I have urged the Union Health Minister J.P. Nadda to intervene in the matter. We are hopeful that the academics will start at Baripada medical college from this year, “said Union Minister Dharmendra Pradhan.