Mumbai, Nov 9 : A proposal for setting up of the North Eastern Institute of Ayurveda and Homoeopathy (NEIAH) at Shillong, Meghalaya, is finally ready to take off as the Department of Ayush has initiated efforts to commence civil works for the facility. The civil works for the institute, which has been in files for more than two years, is expected to commence in early 2010, according to a top official from the department.
The Department of Ayush has assigned HSCC (India) Ltd, a consultancy organisation under Government of India operating to render quality services in healthcare and other social sectors, to find eligible candidate to build the facility and the latter has floated a tender for the purpose last month. Ayush, which received approval for the institute from the central government in the beginning of 2008, is expecting to identify a contractor in the beginning of December, this year, and to commence the Rs 67.51 crore project soon, said the official who does not wanted to be quoted.
The NEIAH will be set up as an autonomous organization under the Department of Ayush at the premises of North Eastern Indira Gandhi Regional Institute of Health and Medical Sciences (NEIGRIHMS), another autonomous institute under the Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.
The institute is designed to facilitate promotion of Ayurveda and Homoeopathy, the expansion of health care, improvement in the doctor-population ratio and R&D on bio-resources in the North East. Though the proposal has been prepared two to three years ago, work on the project was in slow pace till recently. The Department-Related Parliamentary Standing Committee on Health and Family Welfare, headed by the Member of Parliament, Amar Singh, has been repeatedly seeking the department to put adequate interest into setting up of the institute and has even expressed its displeasure on the dismal performance of the department in utilisation of the allocated funds for the North East.
“The Committee is not happy about the dismal performance of the Department in utilization of the
allocated funds for the North East. It is very disturbing to note that the provisions made could not be utilized fully even in respect of a single scheme,” said the committee in its report laid on the table of Lok Sabha in the end of April 2008.
At present, the presence of Ayurveda and homoeopathy institutions in North East are apparently minimal. Only one Ayurvedic College in Assam and three Homoeopathy colleges in Assam and Arunachal Pradesh are there in the North East.
Other states of the North East do not have even a single teaching institution, even though there is considerable demand for Ayurveda and Homoeopathic systems in North Eastern states. It is to improve the condition of Indian Systems of Medicines in this region, the Government of India has proposed a North Eastern Institute of Folk Medicine (NEIFM) in Arunachal Pradesh and North Eastern Institute of Ayurveda and Homoeopathy (NEIAH) in Meghalaya.