Pulwama: A health sub-centre established in 1972 at Muran village in Pulwama district is running out of a rented building that bypasses all norms for a structure utilised in health care.
The building has four rooms, with the centre on the second floor, and is located in an unhygienic area that has many engaged in the cement business operating around it. The doors and windows of the building were allegedly broken by forces in the 2016 uprising and are yet to be repaired.
Doctors and paramedic staff posted at the sub-centre told Kashmir Reader that there is a huge rush of patients here but the available infrastructure, staff and machinery doesn’t permit them to proceed with treatments. Patients are forced to visit the district hospital at Pulwama or turn to facilities based in Srinagar.
“The centre has a very tiny staircase up which it is very difficult for an ill person or a pregnant woman to climb. The health care arrangements are almost negligible, ” a local resident said while adding that a primary health centre had once been sanctioned for the village, but the authorities had taken back the order, citing unavilibility of land.
Muran village is one of the most populated villages of district Pulwama and received Model Village status in 2005. Locals, however, accuse the authorities of denying health care facilities to the area. “Forty-six years have passed, but the different parties who came to power never sanctioned a primary health centre to our village. There are 7,000 souls in Muran and 20,000 in this area, but despite that the authorities have left us abandoned,” Javid Mushtaq, another local, said.
A group of locals said that the government is sidelining their problems by claiming that there is no land in the village. Instead, they say, the government is free to use the village community hall for hospital purposes.
“The government in 2006 constructed a community hall in our village, which has been lying dysfunctional since then, despite the lakhs of rupees that were spent on it,” said Mukhtar Ahmad Lone, a local resident. A single marraige ceremony took place in it in all its 12 years, added bystanders.
The villagers also said that if the government is not ready to utilise the community hall, there is a vacant patch of state land which can be taken for the construction of a hospital building.
“We are forced to go district-based hospitals for minor ailments, which costs us more money and time, ” said Ali Muhammad, a local.
Deputy Commissioner Pulwama Ghulam Muhammad Dar told Kashmir Reader that he will look into the matter. “If the said building (community hall) is feasible for a hospital, then we will do that,” he said.