Posts filed under ‘ESIC dental and nursing college,Kalahandi’
Kosal Kranti Dal (KKD) secretary general Baidyanath Mishra on Wednesday targeted Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik as being Bhubaneswar-centric and not at all caring for western Odisha. He said that wester Odisha was not a priority for the CM.
Mishra told reporters here that the progress of work on the Biju Patnaik University of Technology (BPUT) at Rourkela is still sluggish even eight long years after its foundation. A couple of months back, local MLA and Minister Sarada Prasad Nayak had promised for commencement of the BPUT construction work, but it has been stopped without rhyme or reason, Mishra said.
The BPUT, which is managing more than 150 professional colleges, only has a makeshift office at the UGIE that has become a dumping yard of sacks and trunks of examination paper. The vice-chancellor and a finance officer, along with some junior executives, are running the show.
The university land in the Chhend area is gradually encroached upon by unauthorised persons as there is none to protect the land, Mishra pointed out.
So, he said, an early review of the BPUT’s progress by the Chief Minister is required so that appropriate steps are taken before its head office is finally shifted to Bhubaneswar much to “the delight of a Bhubaneswar-centric Chief Minister,” Mishra said.
On the Western Odisha Development Council; (WODC)-sponsored medical college and hospital, he urged the Government to take steps for getting the Medical Council of India’s (MCI) nod to a hi-tech medical college at Rourkela so that local aspirant students can take admission in MBBS and BDS courses. He also urged the Government to spell out the actual percentage of seat reservation made for the students of western Odisha nativity.
Mishra said Rourkela is deprived of the Commissionerate-II of the Central Excise for the last 14 years. Like the WODC headquarters in Bhubaneswar, some vested interests in the State capital are trying their best to retain this Commissionerate-II office in Bhubaneswar though the July 22, 1997 notification made it clear that the headquarters of the Bhubaneswar-II Commissionerate would be shifted to Rourkela as its jurisdiction is western Odisha.
If these demands are not heeded by the Government, the KKD would have no other option than to launch agitation, he threatened.
Mishra also demanded passenger air line facility for Jharsuguda and Rourkela and an ESIC Medical College in Sundargarh district. He said the State Government should demand another rail coach factory to be set up at Narla, Kalahandi, as promised by former Railways Minister Mamata Banerjee. This was hijacked by Naveen Patnaik elsewhere. Similarly, the Government must take early steps to start a medical college at Balangir at its own initiative.
Mishra said that from July 8 to15 a fact-finding team of the KKD would be touring various parts of western Odisha. Among others, KKD working president Sagar Singh Manki, Rourkela unit president Rama Chandra Amat and founder-member Surama Mishra were present at the news conference.
Ask anybody about western Odisha, and the answer would be of a backward area where concentration of poverty, mass migration and malnutrition is high, even though it has a high concentration of mineral and mining is common. Unfortunately, western Odisha is also lags in healthcare facilities.
Recent reports of HIV/AIDS spreading its tentacles here with as many as 184 persons succumbing to AIDS in 12 backward districts of the State have made the situation grim. There are around 2,400 HIV positive people in this region, even as the United Nations has declared combating HIV/AIDS as one of its Millennium Development Goal (MDG) and universal access to health services as one of the basic human rights.
According to a report of Odisha State AIDS Control Society, there are a total of 17,708 people living with HIV in Odisha out of which 11,052 are men and 6,656 are women. Out of 1,407 AIDS patients, 1,109 have succumbed to the dreaded disease, says the report.
In 12 districts of Odisha – Jharsuguda, Sambalpur, Deogarh, Bargarh, Kalahandi, Nuapada, Nawarangpur, Rayagada, Balangir, Sonepur, Boudh and Kandhamal – a total of 184 persons have died and 2,395 people are HIV positive.
In Jharsuguda district, a total of 114 cases have been detected so far while four have died from AIDS. In Sambalpur district, there are 673 HIV positive cases and out of 39 AIDS patients reported, 33 have succumbed to the disease. In Bargarh district, 180 HIV positive cases have been detected and six have died from AIDS. In Nuapada district, 150 persons have are HIV positive and 19 people have died from AIDS. In Kalahandi district, 264 people have been detected as HIV positive and three have succumbed to the decease. In Rayagada district, 431 have been identified as HIV positive and 51 have died from AIDS. In Nawarangpur district, 409 have been identified as HIV positive and 15 have died from AIDS. In Boudh district, 326 persons have been identified as HIV positive. In Kandhamal district, 32 have been identified as HIV positive and 15 have died from AIDS. In Sonepur district, 17 persons have been identified as HIV positive.
Balangir, which is known for its acute poverty and mass migration, has now 465 HIV positive cases and 39 have died so far. However, official figures state that 327 people have been identified as HIV positive.
Counselors have been appointed in all the 14 blocks of the district but there are only five technicians.
It is futile to expect a person of Tureikela or Muribahal to come to Titlagarh for blood test. The appointment of laboratory technicians is done by the Odisha State AIDS Control Society. We have nothing to say, says an official here. We are trying to manage by imparting training to our technicians on HIV testing and posting them in migrant-prone blocks of the districts, said CDMO Dr PC Sahu.
The second ART centre in western Odisha was opened in Balangir after Burla in May this year. But it has not opened in a full-fledged manner as there is no permanent staff and only one medical officer and a pharmacist has been posted.
According to reports, the ART centre at Burla is not functioning effectively. We have to inform officials of the ART centre about the patients. Patients who come here are allegedly harassed by the officials. The drug adherence centre at Burla does not function and patients face a lot of inconvenience. There is a network of HIV positive people in Balangir which is called the Balangir Network of Positive People but they are not able to do anything.
Even as 327 people have been detected HIV positive, this is just the tip of the iceberg given the mass migration. The number of infected people can go up to one per cent of the total population or 1,500 people of the district.
Ignorance among people, lackadaisical attitude among personnel involved in combating HIV/AIDS and absence of laboratory technicians fail to give the real picture. After the ICTC centre started in Titlagarh, the number of HIV positive cases went up rapidly. If the ICTC centres function with full-time laboratory technicians, the number is expected rise.
There is every possibility of the number of HIV positive cases going up to 1,500 in Balangir district alone and other migrant-prone backward districts like Nuapada, Kalahandi and Rayagada are equally vulnerable, points out an NGO activist.
The integrated counseling and testing facility (ICTC) has been provided only in districts belonging to A and B category in HIV prevalence while the C category districts are being overlooked. It must be noted that the prevalence of HIV is high in regions where there is acute poverty and migration, argues an official here.
Ironically, even after six years of elapse of the OSCAS, its website does not provide any data or information about the prevalence of the disease.
According to reports, major modes of transmission of HIV/AIDS are unsafe sex followed by blood transfusion and it affects mostly the youth in the age group of 14 to 35 years.
Migration has been one of the major factors in western Odisha for the spread of HIV among the rural people. The spouses of migrant labourers of western Odisha are vulnerable to the disease but neither they can challenge and defy the patriarchal system nor can get rid of the infection without preventive measures.
The health rights of the rural poor need to be addressed through inclusive approach. The HIV testing facility is still not available in all CHCs. The absence of laboratory technicians in ICTCs makes the entire system non-functional, said Sashikant Mallick of ActionAid.
Changing lifestyle, poverty, mass migration and lack of access of universal treatment of HIV people have worsened the situation, besides the stigma and discrimination attached with the disease.
While the big bosses implementing the projects are getting huge salary and luxury, bottom level workers are fed up with heavy work entrusted by their officers, rued an NGO activist.
Worse, even as the United Nations has put combating HIV/AIDS as one of the millennium development goals (MDG), and India is a signatory to it, it has not even started and even worse, it is spreading and absence of testing facilities and personnel has been causing much inconvenience.
Union Labour Minister Harish Rawat has admitted that it has been decided to set up the ESIC Medical College and Hospital in Bhubaneswar. Replying to a question bearing No 709 of Rajya Sabha member Rudra Narayan Pany in the ongoing Budget session of the Parliament, Rawat informed that the process of finalising the project estimates and obtaining municipal and other statutory clearances have been initiated and as soon as they are finalised, obtained, the work will be started.
On being queried if any proposal from the State was pending with the Centre for setting up of hospital or dispensary by the ESIC, the Minister replied that no proposal of the State Government is pending with the ESIC. When questioned whether Government will take any step with regard to setting up of a dental college at Angul by the Corporation, the Minister said there is no proposal to start a dental college at Angul.
Following is a report from The Samaja:
Odisha Government is playing politics over location of an ESIC medical college in the State, feel aggrieved intelligentsia of Kalahandi district. Local people, along with MPs, have written letters to the Chief Minister to establish the State’s ESIC medical college at Rourkela, said a leading non-resident Odia (NRO) Digambara Patra.
He pointed out that keeping in view the public sentiment in Kalahandi for a Government medical college and the ongoing protest in Rourkela for an ESIC medical college, the State’s Department of Labour and Employment had earlier requested the Union Ministry of Labour and Employment to establish a second ESIC medical college at Rourkela. And the Government promised a dental college and a nursing college in Kalahandi.
Another NRO, Madhusmita Panda, alleged that Kalahandi has already been betrayed by the State Government for the Central University of Odisha.
Looking at the charged atmosphere and public demand for a Government medical college in Kalahandi, the Department of Labour and Employment has reportedly requested for ESIC dental and nursing colleges in Kalahandi The Union Ministry of Labour and Employment is establishing two ESIC medical colleges in Karnataka, one being in the home constituency of the concerned Union Minister. Why another medical college cannot be established in Kalahandi, asks another NRO, Judhistir Patra. The backward region is being neglected continuously despite being located in the centre of south-western Odisha, he lamented.
Yet another NRO, Sanjib Kumar Karmee, said that the present change of mind of the State Government to plead for dental and nursing college at Rourkela has exposed its mindset towards Kalahandi.
All these NROs demanded that dental and nursing colleges be established in Kalahandi so that years of neglect of the region could be compensated to some extent.