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Court prods firm to finish health hub

The high court on Wednesday directed BL Kashyap & Sons Ltd to complete construction work of Patna AIIMS by December 31 by carrying out work in four shifts.

The division bench of Justice Prakash Chandra Verma and Justice Aditya Kumar Trivedi also directed the construction firm to file an undertaking that it would adhere to the court’s directive.

The bench expressed concern over the tardy pace of construction while hearing a PIL filed by Council for Protection of Public Right and Welfare, a non-government organisation, seeking “fast completion” of the super-speciality hospital in Phulwarisharif within a stipulated timeframe.

The court had on June 29, 2011, fixed October 2, 2012, as the date to make the hospital operational. BL Kashyap & Sons Ltd had been entrusted with the construction work of the health hub.

The bench, while issuing the directive to the construction firm to complete the hospital work by December, said the company had failed to carry out the work in three to four shifts despite repeated orders on previous hearings. The court added that it has come to know that there was a strike of two days because of non-payment of wages to the workers by the firm.

The Centre had filed an affidavit through counsel Vinay Pandey, reiterating its commitment to complete the construction work of the hospital by 2013-14. It had also told the court that there were 1,145 sanctioned posts in various categories (right from Grade I to Grade IV), including professors to nursing employees.

The court directed the AIIMS director to make appointment of 100 posts in Grade III and 200 in Grade IV for efficient and smooth functioning of AIIMS hospital. The director would send the list of appointments to the central government for confirmation and the Centre would take a decision within a month on the list, the court said.

The bench also directed the high court-appointed three-member committee to visit Guru Govind Singh Hospital in Patna City to take stock of the situation of the preparations for starting treatment at the health hub. The panel comprises petitioner Brajesh Kumar, state counsel Shashi Bhushan Kumar and Centre’s counsel Vinay Kumar Pandey.

The court had attached the 450-bed Guru Govind Singh Hospital with the Patna AIIMS until the facility at Phulwarisharif got its own building. The court had in July directed AIIMS doctors to join the city hospital by July 25 and start treating patients in two departments of the emergency and trauma wards from July 26. Till date, treatment has not been started. The classes for the first batch of MBBS students at the AIIMS began on September 25.


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