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Union Minister Nitin Gadkari said on Thursday that there were not enough facilities available in the education and health sectors in rural areas of the country, but the situation is improving. was improving. He was speaking at the inauguration of a multi-specialty charity hospital in the Sinhgad Fort area. “In our country, we do not have enough equipment available in the education and health sectors in rural areas. There are facilities in urban areas, but the situation in rural areas is not so good,” Gadkari said.
The situation in rural areas is as if a school building is available, there are no teachers. If the teachers are available, the school building is not there, he said. “If the two things (teachers and school building) are there, then the students are missing, and if the three things are there, then the education is not there,” he said. Although this is the situation of schools in rural areas, it is improving, said the Minister of Road Transport and Highways.
“When it comes to clinics (health facilities), the situation is also the same in rural areas and we all experienced this fact very well during COVID-19. There are 115 candidate districts (in the country) which are socially, economically and educationally backward and the situation there is very bad,” Gadkari said. The hospital inaugurated by Gadkari was built on the premises of “Apla Ghar”, an orphanage run by social worker Vijay Phalanikar, and will help meet the needs of the surrounding tribal and backward communities.
“The situation in the area where the adivasis (tribals) live is very bad. I can understand the situation because I have also worked for 13 years in regions like Gadchiroli, Ettapalli, Sironcha, Aheri and Melghat and I run “ekal” schools in these regions. In these areas, educational and health facilities are not up to par,” the Lok Sabha member from Maharashtra said.
Gadkari said when ventilators and BiPAPs (bi-level positive airway pressure) were sent to these areas during the COVID-19 pandemic, doctors there didn’t know how to fit a ventilator. “We had to give training by videoconference on the use of a BiPAP. We can feel how serious the situation is in these regions (regarding health facilities),” he said.
Referring to Dr BR Ambedkar’s birthday on Thursday, Gadkari said today as everyone remembers Ambedkar that social and economic equality is only possible when the marginalized and oppressed classes benefit from the same facilities in the sectors of education, health and finance. He said that the administrators of the hospital, which he inaugurated, and the orphanage have demanded better road connectivity in the area and that he will provide it even if he has to “break the rules”.
“There would have been no problem if they had made another large request, because I am authorized for work related to national roads. Although it does not come within the rules (for his ministry to build interior roads), I will build a mile-and-a-half road (near the hospital) breaking the rules. As Mahatma Gandhi said, it is okay to break the rules if a poor person benefits,” the minister said.
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