Bengaluru: Sudhakar miffed over losing medical education portfolio

Health Minister Dr K. Sudhakar
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 Health Minister Dr K. Sudhakar

Highlights

‘Separating medical education, health depts will undermine Covid vaccination drive’

Bengaluru: The minor cabinet reshuffle by stripping some ministers of their departments and allocation of portfolios to the seven newly-inducted ministers by Chief Minister B.S. Yediyurappa on Thursday did not go down well with some of his colleagues.

Speaking out his mind a day after the cabinet reshuffle, Health Minister Dr K. Sudhakar, who is reportedly sulking after being divested of the medical education department, on Friday expressed the view that separating the two departments could undermine the State's Covid-19 vaccination drive.

During the pandemic, Yediyurappa took away Health and Family Welfare from senior leader B. Sriramulu and handed it over to Medical Education Minister K. Sudhakar for better handling of the Covid-19 crisis as the latter is a medical doctor by qualification. On Thursday, however, Yediyurappa gave medical education to senior minister J.C. Madhuswamy. Speaking to the media on Friday, Dr Sudhakar said: "Who will oversee vaccination now? I guess it will get more difficult to answer this question. I will talk to the CM on this issue. We are in the process of Covid vaccination across the State and now the changes. Some 60-70 per cent district hospitals come under medical education and some others are under the health department. I feel that It will be helpful if the two departments are under a single command because as earlier there will definitely be coordination issues between the two departments".

"In the entire country, health and medical education are together. It is not so here due to political reasons, but the CM has taken a decision. I don't know what he has in mind. Keeping in view this vaccination drive, the two departments need to work together so that the vaccination drive can be implemented seamlessly. There shouldn't be any administrative flaws. This is my only concern. I have been into politics for many years, and I have never aspired for any portfolio, but now the situation is very different as health and medical education departments don't cooperate or coordinate. It'll be very difficult and humanly impossible to fight against the pandemic," the minister further said, adding that government should be ready for the second wave of the Covid-19.

As there were murmurs of disagreement in matters relating to Covid-19 handling strategy between Sriramulu and Sudhakar, Yediyurappa had even named Primary and Secondary Education Minister Suresh Kumar as the chief government spokesperson on the Covid-19 pandemic related issues. Later the reins of Medical Education were handed to Sudhakar in October. The move had upset BJP leader from Ballari B Sriramulu who was given the Social Welfare portfolio.

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