New Delhi: Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla on Friday asked a Trinamool Congress MP not to do “marketing” of the West Bengal government when the latter countered the Centre’s allegation that the state was not joining the Ayushman Bharat scheme.
Birla’s remark came during Question Hour when Trinamool’s Sudip Bandyopadhyay said the West Bengal government had introduced a scheme called “Swasthya Sathi Prakalpa” through which every family gets Rs 5 lakh every year.
Bandyopadhyay countered the allegation of Union Health and Family Welfare Minister Harsh Vardhan who accused the West Bengal government of rolling back the Ayushman Bharat scheme in January 2019.
As soon as the Trinamool MP took the name of the health scheme run by West Bengal government, Birla said, “You are not here for marketing of West Bengal. Ask your question.”
After this, the senior Trinamool leader sought to know from the Minister if it was only West Bengal or other states too had refused to join the Ayushman Bharat, a centrally sponsored scheme launched in 2018.
Responding, Harsh Vardhan said the Ayushman Bharat scheme was in the interest of the people and the states should join the scheme in their larger interest.
The Minister said that West Bengal, Telangana, Delhi, Odisha, Rajasthan and Punjab had so far not joined the scheme.
“I have written to the CMs of these states urging them to join the scheme. The Odisha government has responded. They are on board now and will soon join this scheme. Rajasthan and Punjab are also showed positive approach,” Harsh Vardhan said.