SAHARSA: A group of sadhus and disciples of Maharshi Mehi Das on Tuesday staged a dharna at the collectorate gate to protest against the inordinate delay by district administration in earmarking land for proposed All India Institute of Medical Science (AIIMS) at Saharsa.
The sadhus even threatened to undertake indefinite hunger strike if the administration failed to act within a week.
Former district board member and BJP functionary Praveen Anand, who was on dharna with the sadhus, said the district administration should immediately allot the plot for AIIMS so that people of Kosi region get the benefit of quality health facility.
He said a proposal for allocation of 200 acres of land is pending with the district administration for more than one year. “The Union health ministry has approved the establishment of second AIIMS in Bihar under the Pradhan Mantri Swasthya Seva Yojna. The decision to include a suitable place in north Bihar for this ambitious project was taken by the Centre in the Union Budget of 2015-16,” said Anand, adding that Saharsa was identified for the purpose.
The protesters claimed that deputy collector land reform (DCLR), on the instruction of the district magistrate had, vide letter no 458–2 dated April 12, 2016, directed the circle officer of Kahra to send a formal proposal for 200 acres of land as soon as possible, but nothing has moved so far.
“Now, we have come to know that the Centre may shift the proposed AIIMS to some other place, which is not acceptable to people of Kosi which is already a backward region. We will launch a massive protest from next week if the district administration fails to expedite the process of land allotment,” Anand added.
The protesters even requested the intervention of the state government in the interest of Kosi people.