A nurse attends to a newborn at Marwari Relief Society Hospital. Picture by Sayantan Ghosh
The Marwari Relief Society will set up a heart hospital next to its existing 222-bed facility in Burrabazar to mark its centenary.
The cardiac facility will also be a charitable unit, like the main hospital in Calcutta and the 152-bed sister hospital in Raiganj, North Dinajpur.
“The cardiology superspeciality hospital is about to come up on a 6.5-cottah plot. The plan for the G+4 structure is expected to be approved within a month,” said Govind Ram Agarwal, the honorary general secretary of the hospital. “The new hospital should be functional in three years.”
The existing hospital, which runs on donations from patrons of the society, offers quality treatment to the poor. The charge for general beds is as low as Rs 25, while that for ITU and ICCU is Rs 1,000 a day.
It also boasts a 19-bed neo-natal intensive care unit, a seven-bed paediatric care unit, a 12-bed high dependency ward and a diabetes unit.
“We treat people from all castes and creeds. Often patients can’t pay even the meagre bed charge. We do our best to help them,” said Rajendra Kedia, the convenor of a programme to mark the centenary celebration at Kalamandir on March 3.
“The hospital is indebted to eminent doctors, such as A.P. Dutta, P.K. Dutta, Sanjay Gupta and A.K. Jain,” said Agarwal.
Kedia has penned a book tracing the 100 years of the society, from its humble beginning in Burrabazar in 1913 through Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose inaugurating the present address in 1938 to its latest achievements.
This book will be released by governor M.K. Narayanan on March 3.
In February 1913, a young man named Omkarmal Saraf had helplessly witnessed the distress of a mason after he fell from a building under construction and was grievously injured. In those days, there was no provision for the immediate treatment in Burrabazar.
Omkarmal tried hard to redress the situation but no one was willing to help him till he met Harakhchandji Mohta, who introduced him to Seth Jugalkishoreji Birla and Kishanlalji Pachisiya. They planned to start an organisation to help people in need of urgent medical aid in the area. They had discussed the matter with Loknathji Dhandhania and the organisation was born on March 2, 1913.