Hyderabad: Space for Basti Dawakhanas encroached

Community halls occupied illegally by people.

Hyderabad: The Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation has been encountering a strange problem to set up Basti Dawakhanas across the city. The corporation had earlier planned to use community halls for the setting up of 100 Basti Dawakhanas in the city. The civic body teams had even identified 28 community halls which were feasible for establishing them. However, it has now come to the notice of the corporation that these community halls have gone into the hands of some private persons who are refusing to vacate them.

The Basti Dawakhana initiative is a collaboration of GHMC and National Health Mission of Ministry of Health and Family Welfare (MOHFW) to provide free primary health services to the urban poor. The purpose of the Basti Dawakhanas is that it will go a long way in reducing out-of-pocket healthcare expenses for the urban poor. A majority of the doctors, nurses and other paramedical staff at these urban primary health centres are to be employed on contract basis.

But now, according to highly placed sources the corporation has identified five centres in east zone covering Kapra, Uppal and Hayathnagar circles, nine in the south zone covering Malakpet, Charminar and Rajendranagar circles, five in central zone covering Goshamahal, Musheerabad and Amberpet circles, three in west zone covering Moosapet, and Kukatpally and six in North zone covering Alwal, Malkajgiri, Secunderabad and Begumpet circles.

However, when the GHMC tried to set up the Basti Dawakhanas in the community halls identified, the private persons who have been maintaining them during TD’s tenure were not ready to vacate them and claimed them those were their own properties. Sources also said that the corporation will also check 1,376 community halls out of the total 2,990 GHMC properties. They said that a mere 500 community halls were under the maintenance of GHMC while the rest of them were grabbed by the private persons, specifically local leaders cutting across the party lines.

Even though there are sufficient community halls in the city, the higher authorities have asked the lower officials that “in case there is no space in the community halls, private buildings should be identified for setting up the clinics.” Municipal Corporation intends to set up 30 Basti Dawakhanas in the first phase, 26 in the second phase, and 27 in the third phase. Of the 83 proposed clinics, 17 Basti Dawakhanas are now functioning in different areas.

Meanwhile, a senior GHMC official has said that the Basti Dawakhanas issue has been put to rest due to election. The official also clarified that the department would be writing to the state government to take further decision.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle. )
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