PDP lawmaker takes on Minister to highlight shortage of doctors in his constituency

PDP lawmaker takes on Minister to highlight shortage of doctors in his constituency
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Afaq Bhat

Srinagar, Feb 8: The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) MLA Aijaz Ahmad Mir cornered Health Minister Bali Bhagat in the Legislative Assembly for providing the wrong information to the House.
The Minister in his reply while giving the details said that all the Primary Health Centers and Community Health Centers in south Kashmir have sufficient staff. The Minister in his reply had claimed that there is no shortage of staff in the Health Centers in Wachi constituency. However, Mir challenged the Minister and offered to resign from the House if the information provided by the Health Minister was correct.
The PDP MLA took the Minister head on to ensure that this grave concern of his constituency is addressed. Shortage of medical staff in PHCs, CHCs and District Hospitals keeps on hogging the headlines quite often. People face lot of difficulties in absence of doctors and the paramedical staff in government run hospitals.
An analyst while talking to Precious Kashmir said, “It’s nice to see that MLA that too of a ruling party has raised the issue which touches the skin of a common man. Wani raising this burning issue in the House would help the people of his constituency. There is every possibility that government may fill the vacant posts in the health centers in Wachi constituency. “
He said, “Assembly has been in session for the past more than a month but a very few legislators have raised the questions which touch the skin of a common man. There have been political discussions in the House about many issues but such issues have been raised on a very few occasions.”
A Kashmir watcher said that there are many areas in the Valley where hospitals are without doctors and paramedical staff. “Despite the repeated assurances from the government these vacant post have not been filled. Even people with minor ailments are referred to Srinagar for the treatment. Most patients admitted in Srinagar hospitals are referred from the rural areas,” he added.
A doctor said, “Had not the MLA cornered the Health Minister he would have got away by providing wrong figures. The officials who provided these figures to the Minister need to be asked when did they visit the health centers in Wachi constituency.”
An analyst said, “Health Minister should take a note of it and pull up the concerned officials. Anyway all credit should be given to MLA Wachi, Ajaz Ahmed Mir for correcting the Minister.”
It’s in place to mention here that MLA Wachi had sought details of the sanctioned staff and staff in position at various Primary Health Centers and Community Health Centers in Wachi but Health Minister failed to provide correct figures.
He told the Health Minister that doctors appointed in his constituency are working in foreign countries and he should seek the correct information from the officials.