The newly-elected Kangra MP and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) veteran Shanta Kumar on Sunday flayed Virbhadra Singh-led state government for its decision to cancel letter of intent to Vivekananda Medical Research Trust (VMRT) for establishing medical college at Palampur.
The letter of intent was issued to Shanta Kumar headed the VMRT by the previous BJP regime. In a meeting held at Shimla on Saturday, the cabinet had decided to cancel permission given for setting up of four medical colleges in the state, including Vivekananda Medical College.
"The state government on Saturday cancelled the permission granted to the VMRT for establishing medical college at Palampur. This is just another example of vindictive nature with which the Congress government has been working since it came to power one and a half year ago," said Shanta Kumar in a statement issued here.
Alleging that rival parties have always made the VMRT an issue during elections, Shanta said the first priority of the VMRT was to set up a super-specialty hospital. "Medical and nursing colleges will be set up only when the hospital is fully operational," said Shanta.
He reiterated that the VMRT's main objective was charity and not to make money. "I am assured that when the trust will b set up medical college, the same government will grant permission for it," said Shanta.
It is worth mentioning that the VMRT has always remained an issue for Shanta's rivals to target him during election. In this elections also, his one-time protégé Rajan Sushant, who was contesting as Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) candidate, had levelled serious allegations against Shanta in the VMRT matters.
He had raised fingers on the handing over of the Vivekananda Hosptial run by the VMRT to Jaypee Associates Limited (JAL) and the trust having no government nominee.
Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh had also targeted Shanta Kumar on the issue and had even announced to initiate probe into the functioning of VMRT.
Shanta Kumar had maintained that he was just a symbolic head of the VMRT and the trust also had government nominees. He had maintained that he had not taken any personal benefit from the VMRT.
THANKS VOTERS FOR MASSIVE SUPPORT
The newly-elected Kangra MP Shanta Kumar on Sunday expressed gratitude towards voters of Kangra parliamentary constituency for electing him as their representative as well giving massive support to the BJP in general elections.
In a statement issued here on Sunday Shanta said: "People of the state have scripted a new history and I am grateful to them for giving a massive support to the BJP."
He also expressed gratitude towards the party workers, volunteers of Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) and yoga guru Ramdev headed Bharat Swabhiman Manch who tirelessly campaigned to ensure party's win.
Terming it his last election, Shanta said he had fought first election way back in 1967 and would remember the support and respect the people had given him.