Lieutenant Governor Anil Baijal has cleared the AAP government’s flagship project of setting up around 300 mohalla clinics in government-run schools, senior government officials confirmed. Sources, however, said the L-G has directed the AAP government to procure a no-objection certificate (NOC) from civic agencies and to ensure that laid-down rules of the Education Act are not flouted. Sources in the L-G’s office confirmed that the decision was taken in mid-January. Baijal has asked the AAP government to hire well-qualified doctors and also ensure that the “safety and security” of school children is not compromised.
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The aim of mohalla clinics on school premises, according to the AAP government’s proposal, is to provide free primary healthcare to students as well as the general public. Sources said these clinics will have an entry point for general public from the outside, restricting unauthorised entry to the school.
“As these clinics will be set up on school premises, L-G has asked the government to ensure safety and security of students, and also no unauthorised persons could enter the school. Apart from this, L-G has also asked the government to take NOC from agencies concerned, including the MCD, before setting up mohalla clinics,” sources said.
Sources added that Baijal has granted “right to use” the government school land to set up the mohalla clinics. However, the government cannot build hospitals on such land in the future.
In November last year, Baijal’s predecessor Najeeb Jung had sent back the file on the proposal, citing certain clauses of the Delhi School Education Act under which school premises can only be used for academic purposes.
AAP had also identified 300 schools, where it wanted to establish mohalla clinics. But former L-G Najeeb Jung returned that file to the government, asking that the project be reworked. Jung had said that the Delhi School Education Act does not allow establishing anything on school premises. But Education Minister Manish Sisodia later claimed that Jung had “almost agreed” to the proposal.
Meanwhile, the AAP government earlier announced it would, by the end of 2016, set up 1,000 Aam Aadmi mohalla clinics across the capital. But the government’s ambitious project failed to meet the deadline, and it was forced to set 2017 as the new deadline for completion of the project.