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Delhi L-G writes to Saurabh Bharadwaj over 'crumbling' health infrastructure

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Delhi L-G writes to Saurabh Bharadwaj over 'crumbling' health infrastructure

New Delhi, April 5 (Ajit Weekly News) Delhi Lt Governor V.K. Saxena has written a letter to Health Minister Saurabh Bharadwaj saying that the ‘Delhi Model’ of health service delivery lies in shambles and “it appears to be on the life support ventilator”.

“I am writing with reference to your note on April 4 drawing attention to the utter lack of basic consumables in Dr Hedgewar Arogya Sansthan and Chacha Nehru Bal Chikitsalaya. Ordinarily, I would have addressed this communication to the Chief Minister but in his absence, in the current circumstances, I am constrained to address this communication directly to you.

“You (Bharadwaj) would recall that on two occasions, over the last one week, I requested you to come for a discussion on issues of public importance related to healthcare in the given circumstances. However, you chose to disregard the invitation and instead offered some frivolous excuse for not attending the same.”

The L-G further said “the sole objective of such communication is to shrink your own responsibility for lapses in administration and create a false narrative in the public domain”.

“Instead of taking the issue head on, you have consistently chosen to shoot off misleading missives and indulge in the media blame-game. There was a recent instance where you and your Health Secretary were asked to appear personally in a case in the high court.

“The court was so anguished with the miserable situation of health infrastructure, that the division bench threatened you in open court with imprisonment. This itself should have been reason enough for you to take corrective measures for smooth functioning in your department,” the L-G said in the letter.

“I am surprised that hospitals in the national capital run by the Delhi government are not equipped even with basic consumables like cotton. You have also highlighted the unavailability of orthopaedic doctor in one facility,” he said.

The L-G claimed that so bad is the situation that High Court had to step in recently and constitute a committee of doctors to get a proper assessment of health facilities and a roadmap for invoking correctives.

“This sad situation points to a virtual collapse of health administration during the last 10 years, which should be a cause of worry and introspection for you. I must remind you that health is a subject which is wholly transferred to the elected government under the constitutional scheme of things in the Delhi government. As the minister in charge, you should not shy away from taking decisions on portfolios assigned to you in the council of ministers.

“This grave situation should ideally have been discussed way back in the council of ministers, which is the highest deliberative policy-making body of the government,” the L-G letter further stated.

“I would once again urge you to demonstrate leadership and prepare a roadmap for serious action. A white paper on this subject could be a useful starting point. You could rope in specialists and experts for guidance. I hope that you will take my advice in the right spirit and also consult your senior colleagues and reinvigorate the administration of the departments under your charge,” the letter added.

–Ajit Weekly News

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