As AIIMS Jammu takes first batch, approval awaited in Kashmir

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J&K Government has written to the Union Health Ministry seeking approval for the temporary accommodation in Srinagar as campus of MBBS course in AIIMS Kashmir for the upcoming academic session.

While the first batch of 50 students for MBBS at AIIMS Jammu was taken earlier this year, for AIIMS Kashmir, the UT Government is looking at August 2021 for admissions. Financial Commissioner Health and Medical Education, Atal Dulloo, said the Government has written to AIIMS Rishikesh, the mentoring Institute for new AIIMS in J&K, to inspect the options it has identified in Srinagar for a temporary campus.

“We have selected six buildings that have the feasibility to suffice as the temporary campus for AIIMS Kashmir,” he said. He said once the make-shift campus is approved by AIIMS Rishikesh team, the Government would be in a position to take the first batch for the Institute. “We are awaiting reply from them (AIIMS Rishikesh),” he said.

Dr Yashpal Sharma, nodal officer for new medical colleges in J&K said there was a delay of a year by AIIMS Rishikesh team in inspection of the probable temporary sites due to the pandemic. “The travel restrictions have been responsible for pushing the status backwards in Kashmir,” he said. He said in Jammu division, GMC Kathua will be used as a make-shift campus for the 50 students who were admitted for AIIMS Jammu in January. “We have a Director in place also now for this Institute,” he said.

While expressing optimism for starting the classes in Kashmir in the upcoming session, he said the team was likely to approve the sites. “There is no dearth of good buildings in Kashmir and we just await the inspection to carry the process forward,” he said.

Regarding the progress on the site of the institute at Awantipora he said the work on acquiring land for the access road was going on. “The civil work is going on and the other works, such as the wide access road to the site will go on simultaneously,” he said.

AIIMS Awantipora has the deadline of 2024 as per the union ministry of health and is estimated to come up at a cost of Rs 1837 crore. The institute is expected to add 1000 beds including 300 super specialty beds. Besides, the ambitious project includes a medical college with an intake capacity of 100 students when complete and also a nursing college with a capacity of 60 students annually.