Dispute on location keeps new building for health centre defunct

Dispute on location keeps new building for health centre defunct
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The building for SHC Drubgam was completed in 2009

Pulwama: Dispute over the location of a Sub-Health Centre (SHC) between two villages in Drubgam area of Pulwama district has kept a new building meant for the centre vacant for the last than nine years.
According to sources in the health department, a new SHC was sanctioned for Drubgam area in the early 2000s. “Work was started on the project in 2002 by the JKPCC and completed in 2009,” the sources said, adding that the authorities have since failed to make the new building – located in Bala village – functional.
People from the nearby Paeen village, where the SHC has been running from a rented accommodation, have objected to the centre being moved out of their village.
“People from Paeen village even moved to court and the continued tussle meant that the SHC could not be made functional all these years, despite the health department taking over the building several years ago,” sources in the health department said.
People in Drubgam complained that Paeen and Bala were not the only villages dependent on the SHC. “There are more than ten other villages in the vicinity which are dependent on the SHC. We hoped that the new SHC will have better facilities and the general public will be benefited from it,” Shakoor Ahmad, a resident of Drubgam, said.
Locals said that the new building at Bala has turned into a haven for drug addicts and gamblers. “The condition of the new building has kept deteriorating with every passing day,” Zahoor Ahmad, a resident of nearby Sangarbani village, said.
The locals alleged that the authorities have acted as mute spectators and have done nothing to take things forward.
Chief Medical Officer (CMO) Pulwama, Dr Talat Jabeen, however maintained that despite the dispute, the new building has been made functional recently.
“A pulse polio immunisation drive was recently administered from the new building and Asha workers have also been stationed there,” Jabeen said.
She said that the old centre at Paeen also remains functional for now. “We are running both centers on an experimental basis and I think the experiment is working well for now,” she said.