Former health minister and senior BJP leader Sushma Swaraj today expressed concern over the turf war between Union Health Minister A Ramadoss and AIIMS Director P Venugopal , saying it could "destroy the premier institution".
"I am very sad at what is happening concerning AIIMS and the institution is being destroyed by the present union minister," she alleged at a news conference here.
"The best brains are working there and it is churning out the best brains in medical science," she said expressing apprehension that "political adventurism might destroy the institution".
Venugopal threatened to quit from his post on June 15, accusing the health ministry of interfering in the functioning Of AIIMS, but Ramadoss rubbished the charge and said the director was "free to resign".
Swaraj strongly objected to Ramadoss's statement, saying, "These talented people must be honoured for their commitment.
"I also feel that the health minister should not be the Chairman of AIIMS and the post should be occupied by the Prime Minister to avoid recurrence of such incidents," she said.
Swaraj called on President A P J Abdul Kalam and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to intervene and sort out the matter.
She said six projects on the lines of AIIMS had been sanctioned by the Centre during her ministership. "I am very sad personally because of the delay in implementing the projects including one in Bhubaneswar. But I am told the cabinet has cleared the same and the institutes will start functioning by 2008," she said. PTI PKD SUS RHL 06181430 DEL.