Modi ‘inaugurates’ All India Institute of Ayurveda 7 years after it was opened

Without any remarkable achievement to speak of, the Prime Minister is on a mission to lay foundation stones and inaugurate schemes and projects launched by the UPA



The Prime Minister is back to his brinkmanship. His obsession of making new announcements and inaugurating ‘world class’ infrastructure caused embarrassment to him and the BJP when he again inaugurated the All India Institute of Ayurveda (AIIA) in Delhi on Tuesday, which was opened seven years ago.

Speaking on the ‘occasion,’ Prime Minister Narendra Modi also made a veiled attack on the Congress for turning its back on Indian heritage after Independence and warned that “nations that forget their heritage lose their identity”.

In one of the tweets of PMO, AIIA has been proudly called ‘the first ever All India Institute of Ayurveda’

However, records show that the AIIA was in fact inaugurated way back in 2010 by the then Minister of State for Health and Family welfare, S Gandhiselvan. Gandhiselvan is a Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam (DMK) leader who served as MOS from May, 2009 to March 2013 in the UPA government.

When asked why the PM inaugurated AIIA again, national spokesperson of the BJP, Bizay Sonkar Shastri, said, “You can understand how UPA worked by the fact that we have to inaugurate it again.” His wordplay became a tacit acceptance of the fact that the hospital was indeed opened seven years back.

According to the information available on the website of AIIA, the idea to establish an AIIMS like Ayurvedic and research institute was mooted by the Atal Bihari Vajpayee government.

The Ministry of Health and Family welfare had issued a press release in this regard on October 26, 2010 stating that the MOS had inaugurated the OPD services. Emphasising the need for quality Ayurveda treatment, the minister was quoted as saying, “Ayurveda can offer safe and effective approach to holistic well-being to all.”

Priyabhanshu Ranjan, a Delhi-based journalist, has shared his experience with claiming that patients have been visiting AIIA for the last seven years. “I have got free medicine for my mother from AIIA,” he wrote.

Modi ‘inaugurates’ All India Institute of Ayurveda 7 years after it was opened
A screengrab of the copy of a PIB press release stating that AIIA was inaugurated in 2010.

Meanwhile, BJP supporters in social media have have been fervently posting since Tuesday morning on Ayurveda and Indian “culture and heritage.” But when countered with this fact, they remained silent.

“We forgot our heritage for a long time...but now we have started remembering it again,” said Modi after the inauguration. “Ayurveda and yoga can be effective for our soldiers,” he added.

In his Facebook post, free lance journalist Abhishek Shrivastava took a jibe at the BJP and media too. He wrote, “Media and the government together have deceived people again. Modi has cut the ribbon for AIIA that was inaugurated in the time of UPA-2. Newspapers did not even bother to visit the website of AIIA.”

It is important to note that the Shiv Sena, a key partner of the BJP, has also accused the Modi government in the month of May of inaugurating and renaming projects started by the previous UPA dispensations. A terse editorial in Saamana read, “Some important and big projects were started by the previous government and they are just being inaugurated and renamed with vigour.”

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Published: 17 Oct 2017, 6:18 PM