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Mamata Government to set up Health Commission

Indrani Dutta



Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee

Kolkata: The Mamata Banerjee Government has decided to set up a Health Commission which will take care of the appointment of medical personnel associated with State-run hospitals. This in-principle decision was taken at a Cabinet meeting held on Wednesday.

This was the third Cabinet meeting since Ms. Banerjee assumed office on May 20. The decision to set up the Health Commission is in response to the need for an umbrella-body for the health sector on the lines of the College Service Commission. A Cabinet Minister confirmed the development to The Hindu but said no deadline was set for this. It may be mentioned that even as Ms. Banerjee retained the health portfolio, she has been paying surprise visits to State-run hospitals in an effort to tone up their performance. Following one such visit the medical superintendent was suspended on grounds of non-cooperation with the Minister. In another instance, the Chief Minister had to abort her plans of a visit midway after running into huge crowds (some atop lamp-posts). She is still continuing with her “sudden checks".

The State Cabinet also ratified a decision to appoint 46,000 teachers in the primary schools.Briefing reporters on the matter, the Chief Minister said: “The Cabinet today endorsed this decision for creating the posts of 46,000 primary school teachers. There is no way but to make these appointments. There is an acute shortage of teachers. The Finance Department has cleared the proposal and 10 per cent of these posts would be reserved for para-teachers," she said. The entire appointments are likely to be made in a phased manner, over a three-year period. She also mentioned that the Government has been trying to streamline a few processes in the State's education sector which seemed to be having multiple organisations. “We will have two umbrella organisations – one under the school education and another under higher education.", Ms Banerjee said .There were other matters also taken up by the Cabinet but "everything cannot be discussed. That is not the system", the Chief Minister asserted.

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