**Bhubaneswar**: Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Wednesday met Union Health Minister JP Nadda and demanded the release of central funds worth Rs 397 crore for proposed five medical colleges in the State.
Official sources said, Patnaik discussed about setting up of proposed medical colleges in Baripada, Balasore, Koraput, Balangir and Puri during meeting at Sansad Bhawan in New Delhi.
The CM also urged the Union Minister to give permission to the two medical colleges at Baripada and Koraput for their respective first batch of admission from 2017-18.
Besides, Patnaik urged the Union Minister to set up four units of Regional Cancer Centre in the State and Regional Institute of Paramedical in Bhubaneswar.
As per a press release of Government of Odisha, the Union Health Minister appreciated the remarkable achievements made by Odisha in improving various health indices and overall health of the people of the State.
The Union Minister stated that adequate provision has been kept in the budget for 2017-18 for new medical colleges and the balance share of Rs 397 crore will be released to Odisha at the earliest.
The Union Health Minister also mentioned that the Central Government has already approved a State Level Cancer Care Centre at Cuttack at an estimated cost of Rs 120 crore. Further he stated that financial assistance for another three Tertiary Cancer Centres at Rs 45 crore per centre will be provided at the earliest for the centres at VIMSAR, Burla, MKCG, Berhampur and District Headquarters Hospital, Kalahandi.
As regards to the fourth centre at Capital Hospital, Bhubaneswar, the Union Minister assured to consider it favourably.
The Minister also agreed to look into the proposal for establishment of Regional Institute of Paramedical Sciences at Bhubaneswar and doing away with restriction on number of attempts for students appearing in the National Eligibilty cum Entrance Test –Under Graduate (NEET-UG), which is presently under examination of the Oversight Committee set for the purpose, the press note released by the Government of Odisha on Wednesday (March 15) further stated.