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SHILLONG, July 28, 2018: Meghalaya Health Minister, A.L. Hek on Friday said that the Assam government will allot ten medical seats for Meghalaya and would not change the quota, which has been in place for the past several years.

Meghalaya health minister A.L. Hek on Friday said he had a word with Assam health minister Himanta Biswa Sarma, who assured that Assam will not change the quota.

“After receiving a letter from the Assam government that only two out of 10 seats would be allotted for Meghalaya, I called up the health minister and requested him not to change the quota till Meghalaya has its own medical college,” he said.

In September last year, the Supreme Court had directed the Assam government to allocate 10 seats to Meghalaya of the total 27 in Assam.

The apex court had passed this order after hearing a special leave petition filed by the Meghalaya government against their Assam counterpart for abolishing 10 medical seats that were reserved for the hill state.

Assam has been reserving 10 medical seats for Meghalaya – four each in Assam Medical College and Hospital and Gauhati Medical College and Hospital and two in Silchar Medical College.

The Meghalaya government said at the meeting of the joint committee on division of assets and liabilities between the two governments on March 15, 1976, it was decided that the Assam government would give Meghalaya all facilities available in “common institutions (including medical colleges)” in the state, provided that the expenditure was shared on pro-rata basis.

On the proposed set-up of medical colleges in Shillong and Tura, Hek said construction of the institution in Tura will start soon.

Initially, Rs 189 crore has been earmarked for the construction of Tura Medical College with a state share of 10 per cent. The total cost of the medical college will come to over Rs 500 crore. Telecommunication Consultants India Limited was engaged as a consultant for the project.

On delay to start the construction of Shillong Medical College, Hek said the process would start only after Reid Chest TB Hospital at Mawbah here is shifted to a new TB hospital at Umsawli near the North Eastern Indira Gandhi Regional Institute of Health and Medical Sciences.

TNT News with The Telegraph inputs

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