NEW DELHI, July 18 - The division within the Assam BJP over the location of the proposed AIIMS has surfaced yet again, with another senior leader and Lok Sabha MP Ram Prasad Sharma questioning the decision of setting up the health institute at Changsari, while pleading for its establishment at Raha.
In a letter to Union Health and Family Welfare Minister JP Nadda, the Tezpur MP has written that going by the inspection report of the Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, land at Raha has better suitability for establishment of the AIIMS than the plot in Changsari near Guwahati.
To buttress his claim that the Changsari plot is not suitable, Sharma says that it is a village grazing reserve and marshy land requiring heavy expenses for filling it up. Moreover, it is near a cement factory and a coke industry, he writes, adding, thus it is not free from heavy pollution.
�Besides, there is no potable water,� he wrote, adding, the underground water at Changsari contains arsenic and hence, it is not suitable for supply to humans, let alone using it in a hospital.
The plot of land at Changsari is also prone to heavy floods and erosion by the Brahmaputra river, as seen from the last many years, Sharma claims.
The traffic congestion in the area and the vehicular sound pollution will not be conducive to a healthy and pollution-free environment, the Lok Sabha MP points out.
Further, Sharma claims that the Indian Army has started work in a nearby hilltop for developing infrastructure for a missile launch pad and for arms firing practice to its personnel. Quoting media reports, Sharma says that the army is going ahead with a nuclear arsenal depot in the nearby hills, which is likely to affect the proposed health institution�s environment.
Sharma is the second MP after Union Minister of State for Railways Rajen Gohain to have openly come out in support of the Raha site, despite the BJP-led NDA Government at the Centre clearing the Changsari plot for the proposed AIIMS.