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Union minister Manoj Sinha today exhorted young doctors to render their services to the needy in rural areas, saying lack of adequate healthcare in those regions is hindering the progress of the country.
The Minister of State for Communications was speaking at a function at the Lady Hardinge Medical College here to mark the closing of the centenary celebrations of the institution that was established in 1916 as the first medical college exclusively for women.
"I wonder if Lady Hardinge was here today, what would have been her expectations from the graduating students. I feel doctors walking out of this esteemed college would think about less number of doctors in rural areas.
"And, the country is lagging behind on several international growth parameters due to inadequate health care in those areas. I believe if doctors graduating out of this college would think about serving the poor and the needy in rural areas, that would be the true centenary tribute," Sinha said.
The minister said it is time to do "introspection" and go into the purpose with which this college was established, as he exhorted young doctors to render service to the nation.
A postage stamp and a special first day cover was released by Sinha on the occasion. A coffee table book chronicling the 100 years of the college with rare photographs was also launched.
Union Minister of State for Health and Family Welfare Anupriya Patel said the Centre is making efforts to "restart" the redevelopment work at century-old college, which has been "stalled" for past some time.
"With 370 beds, the college's Kalawati Saran Children's Hospital, established in 1956 is biggest such hospital in the government sector... And, in 2011, the Centre had approved the redevelopment plan, which has not been taking forward due to some reasons. Our ministry is making efforts to restart the reconstruction work at the earliest," Patel said.
The Lady Hardinge Medical College (LHMC) or 'Lady Hardinge' as it is popularly known, is an architectural landmark and sits in the heart of the city next to Connaught Place.
As per the redevelopment plan, construction of several multi-storeyed buildings began but the work has been stalled for some reasons. Sources said the "delay" has also been caused by issues with contractors.
"The redevelopment plan includes construction of a out-patient department, in-patient department, and a new high-rise academic block," LHMC Director Jagdish Chandra told PTI.
At the centenary convocation of the college on September 21, Union Health Minister J P Nadda had said that the government has "grand plans" for redeveloping and modernising LHMC.
"I was born in 1967 and I tell you in 1966 Dr Yasmin had won the Miss India crown and even competed in Miss Universe contest (finishing top three). Her face is etched in my memory," New Delhi MP Meenakshi Lekhi said.
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