State Transport Minister Madan Mitra has courted controversy with his comment that several CPM ministers in the previous Left government had claimed medical reimbursement despite availing free treatment at a premier private hospital.
“The state government will send letters to the hospital to extract details on the cost of treatment, the number of days for which the former ministers were admitted and the bills, to prove that they never paid. But they claimed medical reimbursement,” Mitra told reporters.
“We want to scan the treatment cost of several CPM ministers and leaders who were admitted to hospitals during the Left regime.”
Mitra’s assertion followed the CPM’s allegation that Trinamool Congress leaders were pressuring doctors and management of Rabindranath Tagore International Institute of Cardiac Sciences to discharge CPM leader Rezzak Mollah, who was admitted there after being allegedly beaten up by Trinamool leader Arabul Islam on the outskirts of Kolkata 11 days ago.
Though Trinamool leaders brushed aside the incident and claimed that the injuries sustained by Mollah were “minor,” medical reports showed a fracture in Mollah’s lumbar spine.
Doctors had advised bed rest for 45 days. Decrying Mitra’s comment, the CPM said his remarks were “barbaric” and “vindictive.”
Leader of the Opposition Surya Kanta Mishra said: “From when did Madan Mitra become the health minister? As far as I know, the chief minister heads the department, and there is a MoS. Why is the transport minister interfering in the health department?”
“I would also like to know how many patients are availing the free treatment scheme in private hospitals at the recommendation of Trinamool leaders and ministers,” he added.