Jammu and Kashmir Governor NN Vohra has written to all the chief ministers and the administrators of all the union territories for their support in ensuring that Compulsory Health Certificates (CHCs) are issued after adequate examination of applicant’s medical status.
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The Governor has urged the CMs to issue specific directions to their Health Departments to ensure that the doctors nominated to issue CHCs to the intending pilgrims for Shri Amarnathji Yatra 2017 strictly follow the Guidelines issued by the Shrine Board.
He said that keeping in view the challenging high altitude terrain of the Yatra area, it is necessary that only such persons embark on the pilgrimage who are fully fit and no applicant who is suffering from any medical ailment is issued the required CHC.
The Governor noted that during every Yatra a significant number of pilgrims lose their lives due to heart, lung and other medical failures.
The Post-Yatra Review, undertaken by the Shrine Board after every yatra, reveals that many lives could have been saved if the Doctors/ Medical Institutes, nominated by the State/UT Governments had issued the required Health Certificate only to the eligible persons and denied the same to those who have suffered or are presently afflicted by heart, lung or other serious ailments.
During Yatra 2016, it had come to the Shrine Board’s notice that persons having serious medical complications and children aged less than 13 years were issued CHCs by the nominated doctors, which enabled such persons to secure Yatra Permits from the designated Bank Branches.
The Governor cited the Supreme Court’s judgement of December 2012 directing the state governments to annually notify a list of doctors who shall be authorised to issue health certificates.
The SASB has provided Guidelines for the authorised doctors/ institutions in the states which advise, that no person below the age of 13 years or above the age of 75 years or a woman with 6 weeks pregnancy should be issued a CHC.
The examining doctor should write his/her MCI registration number and name and put their stamp at the appropriate places indicated in the CHC and not leave any blank while issuing the certificate.
Further, the authorised doctors are required to ensure that any applicant who has undergone bypass surgery or has implanted stents is not issued a certificate.