Uttarakhand: Row over proposed name change of medical college in Rudrapur
Ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) lawmaker Rajesh Shukla has opposed a proposal of renaming Rudrapur’s Pandit Ram Sumer Shukla Government Medical College after the country’s first home minister Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel. The local zila panchayat on Tuesday passed a resolution for the name change.
The college is named after Shukla’s father. “It is the privilege of the state government to decide the name of any institution. The zila panchayat cannot pass such a proposal. Such an act is an insult to our freedom fighters.”
The college’s foundation was laid in 2004 and it was named after Pandit Ram Sumer Shukla, a freedom fighter in 2016.
“I respect Sardar Patel but the proposal to change its name is politically motivated.”
Suresh Gangwar, a nominated representative of the panchayati raj minister in the zila panchayat, said Pandit Ram Sumer Shukla’s statue has been installed at the main intersection of Rudrapur close to the medical college. “What is the point of naming the medical college after him.”
Shukla said he is an ex-officio member of the panchayat but was not invited to the meeting where the proposal was mooted. “It is a political conspiracy, and I will move a privilege motion in the assembly against Apar Mukhya Adhikari of the zila panchayat for not inviting me. The name change is not a good practice.”
He rushed to the panchayat after learning about the proposal and protested against the move, triggering a heated exchange of words with Gangwar, who is also the husband of zila panchayat chairperson, Renu Gangwar.