Fund crunch: Construction work at Rajan Babu tuberculosis hospital in Delhi comes to halt

Doctors say walls are ridden with mould, which may lead to respiratory diseases, posing threat to patients
Mould on the walls is likely to get worse in monsoon season, doctors say| express
Mould on the walls is likely to get worse in monsoon season, doctors say| express

NEW DELHI: Construction work at Rajan Babu Institute of Pulmonary Medicine and Tuberculosis has come to a halt due to lack of funds given by MCD. A portion of the building was earlier sealed as a ceiling in a ward fell, proving to be a threat to the patients and the staff.

Besides, the doctors also complained about mould developing on the walls, causing a danger to health. With the onset of monsoon, this mould can lead to infections, including fungal and respiratory diseases.
Repair work at the ward started in January after the government sealed the building but it has not been finished so far. “We have raised the issue regarding maintenance of the building several times but nothing significant has happened except for a few minor repairs,” said a doctor.

According to official sources, the engineers involved in the repair work are out of funds. “The maintenance work was going smoothly for some time, but then it started slowing down. There has been an issue of funding from the corporation,” said a hospital official.

When The New Indian Express contacted the North Delhi Municipal Corporation Mayor Raja Iqbal Singh, he did not respond to the query. Meanwhile, Dr Mansi Anand, director of the hospital, said the engineers know what work is being done and the same is underway. “Some part of the repair work has finished and some is underway. Engineers on the job will know it better,” said Anand.

When asked about the mould situation, she said there have been no complaints on that.With 700 beds and around 50 doctors, the institute is one of the biggest hospitals under the North MCD. In January, Health Minister Satyendra Jain also ordered an inquiry over whether the hospital was running from a dilapidated building that the civic body declared as dangerous. Jain ordered vacation and sealing of the building.

The issue even led to a political slugfest between the AAP and the BJP which rules the municipal corporation. The NDMC claimed that only the facade and two wards in the multi-storey block were in a damaged state, and not the whole building as alleged by the AAP. Saying that the AAP is playing politics, the officials said that experts at IIT-Roorkee had been commissioned to assess the structural safety of the building.

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