BMO contests Army claim on occupied building

Srinagar: The Health department has contested army’s claim that the hospital building at Krusan, Lolab, was not occupied by it. Terming the army claim as baseless, Health department officials asserted that the building meant for sub-health centre at Krusan has been under army occupation for the past 19 years.
Sogam Block Medical Officer Dr Firdous told Kashmir Reader that the building was never handed over to the Health department because it remained in army control for almost two decades.
“Army never handed over the occupied health centre building to us despite the fact that we wrote many letters to them. The building continues to be under army control,” he said.
Kashmir Reader carried a report titled ‘Army stays put in Hospital Building for 19 years, villagers suffer’ in its March 24 issue.
“Soon after Kashmir Reader carried the report, Commanding Officer (CO) of the Army Unit called me and asked if health department had any documentary proof about the building being occupied,” Dr Firdous said.
“I replied that how could we have documents of an occupied building,” he added.
Dr Firdous said that the CO again called him yesterday (March 28) saying that the army has decided to vacate the hospital building by the end of this month.
However, the BMO has sought renovation of the building by army before it is handed over to the health department. The department has also demanded rent for all the years the building remained under the occupation of army.
It in place to mentioned here that the army had termed the report published in this newspaper as “baseless and an attempt to malign the fair image of the army.” An army spokesman claimed that “the said building located near the COB of an RR unit has been lying vacant ever since it was handed over back to Block Medical Officer of Public Health Dept in July 2007.”