Private School Running In Govt Dispensary

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SRINAGAR: A private school is running in a government dispensary in Handwara – in a building constructed with lakhs of rupees from the public exchequer.

Surprisingly, the health department, which is supposed to man and equip the medical facility, has no knowledge of the dispensary.

The building has come up in the Palpora village, and its cost of Rs 4.5 lakh was financed by the local MLA’s constituency development fund.

It had been built under the Border Areas Development Programme to provide medical facilities to the people of the area, the work being executed by the Block Development Office concerned.

But instead of being equipped with medical staff and diagnostic tools by the government, the dispensary was taken over by a private school, and virtually gobbled up by its management.

Locals are puzzled how a private school has taken control of a government building.

The health department too is clueless about the construction.

 “We have no knowledge of who constructed this dispensary, and when,” the Block Medical Officer (BMO) in Handwara, Dr. Nazir Ahmad, said.

But the Block Development Officer (BDO) in Rajwar admitted that building had been constructed by his department.

“Our job was only to erect the building. Equipping and running it as a dispensary was not our responsibility,” the BDO said.

“It was formally handed over to the health department. It is their job to turn it into a functioning medical facility,” he said.

Locals demand that the building be used for the purpose for which it was constructed so that a large populated area can avail of health services.  

“For the time being, we are suffering because of lack of access to medical care,” they say.  

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