Nitesh Kumar Sahoo

A group of social workers staged a sit-in protest at the Collector Office in Puri on Tuesday alleging poor healthcare infra and other related issues at Baliput hospital in the district.

As per reports, the group of social workers have been demanding permanent placement of doctors, pharmacists and attendants at the Baliput hospital. Incorporating additional equipments, construction of residential quarters, maintaining cleanliness of the premises and boundary wall construction also are on their list of demands.

The protesting social workers alleged that their demands have been falling on deaf ears and no step has been taken by the administration to address the issues. 

Puri MLA and BJP leader Jayanta Kumar Sarangi who joined the protest said, "The social workers have five demands which are legitimate. I will continue lending my support to them (protesters) until the issues gets sorted out." 

Sarangi said he will sanction Rs 10 lakh fund from MLALAD (Member of Legislative Assembly Local Area Development) for the boundary wall construction. “The Collector has given a word to appoint permanent doctors," he added.

The local MLA said he has discussed with the concerned authorities for ensuring the supply of drinking water and maintaining cleanliness in the hospital premises. "A huge amount of fund is being released by the Centre under National Health Mission which is enough for maintaining hygiene," he added.

Meanwhile, District Collector Samarth Verma said, "Their demands include the posting of more number of doctors along with certain other issues. The ADM (Additional District Magistrate) has discussed with them and has assured to resolve the matter soon."

"Since it is about the appointment of doctors, we have certain constraints. We will request the government to address the issue in case we fail to resolve it," Verma added.