Subhas Chandra Pattanayak
When Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh shall take a heart surgery this morning, our sincere wishes for success of the surgery and for his speedy recovery will be very much there mixed with the wishes of all of our countrymen and of the global community as well.
The peoples of Orissa, apart from wishing him all the best as the PM of India, have two special reasons to wish the surgery success. Firstly, his son-in-law Asok Kumar Patnaik, an IPS officer, is an Oriya and secondly, Dr. Ramakant Panda of Asian Heart Institute, Mumbai, who will do the surgery in the Operation Theater of All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), also belongs to Orissa by birth.
We as Oriyas are very proud of Dr. Panda being the choice for the most responsible surgery of the day. On this day, there is perhaps no surgery being conducted in any part of the globe that could be bearing more global importance and attracting more global attention than what Dr. Panda is going to do now. We are sure of his success even as we know, it would be the most brilliant service he should be giving to the nation.
However, it would be wrong to remain silent on how adversely it affects the health of the country. Dr. Singh’s Information Minister Priya Ranjan Dasmunsi, yet battling against ailments, was, after being admitted for cardiac problems, shifted from AIIMS to privately run Indraprastha Apollo Hospital in October 2008 and now, even though the PM is going to be operated upon in the OT of AIIMS, the surgery is to be conducted by Dr. Panda of another privately run hospital, the Indian Heart Institute, Mumbai.
This makes it abundantly clear that our leaders, who are in power, know that the AIIMS is dead or has lost its vigor. They have killed the AIIMS or eager to see it killed.
The all-powerful Government of India that could strangulate our democracy to help the then USA President Bush succeed in his stratagem to subject this country to his country’s nuke hegemony, has failed to appoint a full-term Director after termination of the term of Dr. P. Venugopal eight months ago. It cannot but be deliberate.
It is not the time to say; but one cannot but say that in Dr. Singh’s regime the AIIMS has been massacred.
The manners of his Minister Ramadoss in the context of its autonomy and the impact thereof on the psyche of its Doctors should have been taken to serious consideration if Dr. Singh was not bent upon to open up the health sector like all other sectors to private players.
No wonder that the PM who never hesitated to steer the administration into doing any utter inhuman operation to free the country of “Left-Viruses” for providing a safe environment to private capital, has preferred a private Doctors’ team to the Doctors of the AIIMS for his own surgery.
But in this, he has ensured that the greatest of the public sector institute of health sciences in India succumbs to the “Right-Viruses”.