BJP state unit president and Member of Parliament (MP) Jugal Kishore Sharma said on Tuesday that AIIMS would be established in Jammu. He said both the regions of the state will get one AIIMS each and the party's central leadership has agreed to it.
"Like in Kashmir, AIIMS will be established in Jammu. We have discussed the issue with the central leadership of the party. We (the state unit of the party) is quite sure that an announcement in this regard will be made soon," Jugal Kishore told HT.
The MP said he will not comment on the statement of chief minister Mufti Mohammad Sayeed, who had earlier said AIIMS will be set up in the Kashmir.
"I will not comment on the statement of the CM on this issue, but one thing is clear, AIIMS will be set up in Jammu," he said.
The BJP state president said in the past the Centre had agreed to set up one central university each for both the regions.
It's for the first time that the BJP leadership has categorically said that AIIMS will be set up in Jammu. Deputy chief minister Nirmal Singh had on May 15 said that an institute with top medical facility will be set up in Jammu, though, he had also said whether it will be AIIMS or like AIIMS will be decided later.
"People of Jammu should be assured that they would not be deprived of the prestigious institute and the same would be established in this region also," said Jugal Kishore Sharma
The BJP is facing criticism from the opposition, especially Congress, after AIIMS was allegedly shifted to the Kashmir Valley.
The finance minister in his Union budget on February 28 had announced AIIMS in the state, though on the same day minister of state in Prime Minister's Office Jitendra Singh had said AIIMS has been announced for Jammu and he had thanked the finance minister for the same.
Though the agenda of alliance released next day on March 1, when the state government was formed, has clearly stated that AIIMS would be set up in Kashmir.
The BJP is apprehensive that if this issue is not solved at the earliest, it could affect the party politically.