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Sunday, August 26, 2012

Uncertainty is Not Wholly Over for MMCH


MALDA, 28 JUNE: Malda Medical College is facing uncertainty over the further recognition. MCI team is visiting Malda in coming February. Before that college must complete the construction of OPD and Academic building. But the state of work as it remained would hardly be completed within 7 months. Principal of MMC Dr Uchhal Bhadra pointed his finger to the construction firm but the firm on the other hand claimed that delay in payment was the main ordeal.

Dr Bhadra conceded that the progress of the building was so slow that it was almost impossible to complete the work in time. So approval from MCI for the 3rd year study might be stalled. Third year study with the courses on surgery, gynecology, community medicine, ENT, eye is one of the most important phase which needs an improved infrastructure. For this academic building and OPD was an urgent need. Bhadra said, “In fact many constructions were completed which are required in later years. But the immediate need was not looked after. Had the priorities of the medical college was short listed such problem would not have surfaced.”     

It is learnt that Left Front government had formed West Bengal Medical Service Commission to look into the construction of the new medical colleges of the state. This commission has assigned the order to construct the MMC through tender to a firm based on Pune, named Punch Lloyd. It was seen that the firm could not complete the works which was needed immediately which led to the crisis in getting approval from MCI.

Project manager Jayanta Saha said, “We got the order on 27 January of 2011. The construction was supposed to be completed in April, 2012. But only state government is responsible for this delay. We have got bills only twice but had already spent Rs 80 crore. 13 bills were submitted altogether but got only Rs 35 crore in two bills. We had engaged 600 labourers for this huge construction. But without payment in regular basis we cannot afford them. Presently only 150 workers are engaged. Even the initial budget Rs 183 crore has been escalated to Rs 263 crore.” Saha however, hoped, “If the payment becomes regular we are confident to complete the work within another year.” Now the anxiety looms large whether the next inspection of MCI could get the nod for third year.

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