Mysuru, October 12:- In what is seen as a major shuffle in the state Cabinet, Medical Education Minister Dr K Sudhakar on Monday (October 12) was given the additional charge of the state Health Ministry. B Sriramulu, who was the Health Minister so far, has been asked to take charge of the Social Welfare Ministry.
Reacting to the change, Dr Sudhakar said, “No one should give undue importance to this administrative change. It is not a move to disrespect Sriramulu or his work as the Health Minister.” The minister said, “There is no complaint against Sriramulu about his work. All have been contributing to our fight against the coronavirus. Nobody’s prestige is at stake and please don’t try to read between the lines.”
Elaborating further, Dr Sudhakar said, “Health Ministry is a challenging task. Trusting my abilities, Chief Minister B S Yediyurappa has asked me to take over the additional charge. Our focus is to improve the Health Ministry further on the lines of Kerala. People of Karnataka should get the best medical services and that is what our aim is.”
The minister opined, “There is a lot to be done in the health sector in the state which needs a practical approach. I have been asked to shoulder a major responsibility. Expectations are also high in this hour of crisis. We need to bring down the coronavirus fatality rate. Coronavirus cases should be identified within 24 hours and treated accordingly. Only then, will the death rate come down.
“Technically speaking, health and medical education ministries should be one. In many states, they are functioning as one department. Practically, the two departments working separately may not be effective and no wonder, I have been given the additional charge. In fact, Sriramulu wanted the Social Welfare Department and he has got it. No one is upset because of the change.”
On shortage of staff in the Health Department, Dr Sudhakar said, “The issue will be taken up for discussion. Whatever is needed to control the pandemic will be looked into.”
The meeting is also expected to discuss preparations for Dasara which is drawing more attention because of the pandemic situation. (MR/KS)