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26 years on, Khamukh PHC still not ready for patients

Sentinel Digital DeskBy : Sentinel Digital Desk

  |  9 Aug 2016 12:00 AM GMT

From a Correspondent

Gaurisagar, August 8: Khamukh is a remote, flood-hit area under no-103 Amguri LAC in Sivasagar district. After 69 years of the country’s independence, the people of the flood-prone area have been deprived of proper medical facilities.

For any medical treatment people have to rush either to Sivasagar Civil Hospital or to Jorhat Hospital which is more than 30 km away from the area. With a view to set up a hospital at Khamukh, the people of greater Khamukh area convened a public meeting at Khanmukh Tiniali on September 11 in 1991 under the chairmanship of social worker Nila Gogoi. In the meeting the farmers of No. 1 Khamukh Mout village, Deben Borah, Roben Borah, Badan Borah and Mongola Borah provided five bighas of their valuable land under Jakaichuk Mouza in Mout Gharfalia village (Miyadi Patta No. 105) under Sivasagar revenue circle in exchange of recruit them in grade IV posts. The public meeting adopted a proposal to appoint land donor family in grade IV post in the proposed hospital and sent its copy to the authorities concerned. Honouring the public demand on June 3, 1992, the then Chief Minister Hiteswar Saikia laid the foundation stone of the hospital. But only three Assam-type buildings out of five were completed.

In a half done state the department concerned came forward to iugurate the hospital for patients on August 3, 2010. But due to land dispute the plan had to be cancelled. As the department concerned has not taken any steps for engagement of the farmers in the hospital, the land donor family had staged protest following which authorities had to cancel the plan of opening the hospital. Since then the land donor family locked the hospital rooms and its main entrance gate. The doctors, other medical and paramedical staff and Grade IV staff who were appointed have been attached in various healthcare centres since then.

The members of the land donor family told media persons that they would protest against iuguration of the hospital until and unless their family members were appointed either in Grade IV post of that hospital or any other government department. They even told The Sentinel that on December 1, 2008, an interview was held at Sivasagar Circuit House for recruitment of Grade IV staff under health department. The candidates of land donor family appeared in the interview. They alleged that the health department deprived them and appointed other candidates.

The land donor family also met then State Health Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma on May 17, 2010 in Guwahati and demanded to absorb their family members either in Grade IV post of the hospital or any other government department, but in vain. A public meeting was held at the hospital premises on January 31, 2014 under the chairmanship of Utpal Duarah, president Khamukh GP. The meeting adopted a proposal to open the hospital immediately by recruiting the members of the land donor family in any government department based on their education qualification. But the authorities turned a deaf ear to it. After a long interval Sivasagar Deputy Commissioner Virendra Mittal took initiative to open the hospital by discussing with the land donor family on August 31. The donor family asked the Deputy Commissioner to absorb the victimized land owner family either in grade IV post of the hospital or any other government department.

The Deputy Commissioner frankly said that he could provide temporary job in the canteen in the hospital campus. Besides if their children want to learn nursing driving or any other self-employment trade, he could provide them. But the members of the land donor families were adamant in seeking government job. The Deputy Commissioner also asked Khamukh GP president Utpal Duarah to hold a public meeting in this regard. Following the DC’s order Khamukh GP had organized a public meeting on September 3 at the Gaon Panchayat Office under the chairman ship of Utpal Duarah. In the meeting local people urged upon the land donor family members to discuss with the district administration through understanding for opening the hospital. In the meeting on behalf of land donor family, Deven Borah said that until they were given permanent government jobs, they would protest against opening of the hospital.

Another land donor member Arun Borah said that until and unless permanent jobs were provided to them, they would oppose opening of the hospital. Khamukh GP president submitted the public meeting preceding and proposal on September 5 to the Deputy Commissioner of Sivasagar. Although the then Sivasagar DC Virendra Mittral took initiative to open the hospital by negotiation with the land donor family, but his initiative was nipped in the bud. Two months ago the land donor family met Amguri MLA Prodip Hazarika. The MLA assured them to inform the State Health Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma. The people of Khamukh area expected that in the budget session of the State Assembly, this matter would be looked into seriously. But there was no discussion regarding opening of the 30-bedded Khamukh hospital.

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