Amidst repeated protests,the Central Government Health Scheme (CGHS) dispensary at Lulla Nagar has finally been shut down. However,those opposing the move have alleged that no prior notice was given for the closure. The doctors and pharmacists from Lulla Nagar have resumed duty at the newly set up dispensary at Akurdi.
Some protestors have also alleged foul play in the manner a tender was given out to a wholesale medicine dealer for local purchase of those medicines that is not available at the dispensary. They have alleged that wholesaler,who has been given the tender,is a close relative of one of the official.
However,all such claims have been refuted by Francis Ellis,General Secretary,CGHS staff association. This is an internal problem which is being blown out of proportion by some insiders to tarnish the name of a few people. The tender is given after the recommendation of a five member committee that is finally approved by the Directorate in Delhi. Such matters are not decided in Pune.
We were given written assurances twice,once on June 29 and then again on July 2,that at least skeletal facilities at the dispensary will be continued. But now the officials are talking about the decision from Delhi. How can they decide to shut it down overnight without any prior notice? asked Anil Shingitam,General Secretary,Central Government Employees and Pensioners Co-ordination Committee.
He said the order for the closure of the dispensary was received from New Delhi in April,2008,but no action was taken to shift it until now. He also said the RTI application regarding the services at the Akurdi dispensary was also not addressed by the officials.
Shiv Sena MLA,Mahadev Babar said,We are supporting the cause as the card holders in Lulla Nagar,the retired persons are facing a lot of problems due to sudden closure of the dispensary. Those lobbying for the shifting of the Lulla Nagar dispensary to Akurdi have vested interests in the area. We will stage protests in the city if services at the dispensary are not resumed by July 28.
SR Pashupatimath,additional director,CGHS,Pune,and administrative head,JP Gupta, however,were not available for comments on the issue.