No site has been identified yet: DC
Srinagar, Feb 22: People in the Pulwama are mulling protests against the government, but this time for a development issue of establishing the proposed Maternity Hospital away from the District Headquarters.
Last year in September, during her ‘Public Darbar’ with the people and civil society of the Pulwama, Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti assured the setting up of a maternity hospital in Pulwama town to meet the growing health issues of women.
As per the official press release of the Department of Information and Public Relations, Mehbooba had said that a separate Maternity Hospital and doctors’ residential quarters will be constructed in Old Hospital Complex presently housing CMO’s office.
However, the DIPR released another press release on February 15 briefing Divisional Commissioner Kashmir, Baseer Ahmad Khan’s review meeting of the progress on Chief Minister’s decisions for district Pulwama that she took in the Public meeting.
“It was also said that land has already been identified at Chandgam Pulwama for the construction of separate Maternity hospital which is temporarily functioning in SDH Rajpora,” the press release mentioned.
Later some rumours were floated on social media that the hospital will be built in Chandgam village in Tahab area, which is more than 10 kilometers away from the Main town and the DIPR release accentuated those rumours.
This set the town into anger and immediately a Civil Society group and traders met the CM again, in presence of DC Pulwama, where they were assured that the hospital will be set up in Pulwama town and nowhere else.
On February 20, the Civil Society met the Additional Deputy Commissioner Pulwama, Showkat Ahmad Rather and threatened to launch a stir if any other site than in the Pulwama town is identified for the proposed hospital.
The Civil Society members clearly told the ADC that they will resist any move to establish the hospital outside the town.
“Pulwama town is the central place in the district and all the villages have road accessibility to it. So, the proposed maternity hospital should be set up here. We have enough government land (Kachchari land) available in Sirnoo, and along Bypass road. Sirnoo is in the vicinity of the town where 70 kanals of government land are available for the hospital and Bypass road is accessible to all,” Chairman Civil Society, Ghulam Nabi Malik said.
“We will resist and protest any move to shift the hospital outside. No lesser person than the Chief Minister has promised it to us. Even the Deputy Commissioner Pulwama assured us that he will protest along with us if the hospital is built outside the town,” Malik said.
The Civil Society members said that ADC also assured them that the administration has no such plan to build the hospital in Chandgam or any other site.
Deputy Commissioner Pulwama, G M Dar said, “As on date, no site has been identified for the proposed hospital. Public interest and convenience will be the criteria in setting up the hospital at the identified site.”
Dar also dismissed the information department’s release. “The Information Department has wrongly mentioned the information about the maternity hospital to be set up in Chandgam. We did not show any site in our presentation. I later took up the matter with the Information Department,” he said.