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Govt yet to make move to regulate private hospitals

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By Mudassir Kuloo

Srinagar, Apr 10: Over six-months have passed since a committee submitted its recommendations for regulation of rates in the private hospitals, yet it awaits implementation due to the opposition from the proprietors.
The failure of the government to regulate rates is taking a toll on patients, who are being charged as per the will of hospitals.
The committee headed by Director Health Services Kashmir submitted its report in September last year for regulation of rates.
However, the government has so far failed to its execution due to opposition by private hospitals.
An official in the Health Department said that private hospitals rates were monitored everywhere in the world.
“There is no check on private hospitals in the valley,” the official said.
In absence of regulations, there have been frequent complaints about the patients being fleeced by private hospitals, he said.
There are 42 private hospitals and nursing homes registered with the Directorate of Health Services Kashmir (DHSK).
“There are also variations in tests in privately run medical labs,” the official said.
The official said that private hospitals have raised objections over implementation of the report for regulation of rates.
“Let us hope that the government will implement it, so that there is uniformity in rates,” the official said.
In 2012, Health Department had issued an order making mandatory for nursing homes to display costs against services provided by them for the purpose of transparency.
A government of India’s survey released in 2016 has revealed that childbirth at a private hospital in J&K would cost more than it would cost in most states of India.
The survey has said that for a single childbirth at a private hospital in Kashmir’s rural private nursing home is Rs. 23,750 on an average, higher than national average.
Ghulam Mohammad Bhat, whose brother underwent surgery for removal of gall bladder last month, said, “We were charged Rs 50,000 by a private hospital in Srinagar. One of our relatives for the same surgery was charged only Rs 35,000.”
It has also been seen that patient load in government hospitals force people to turn to private hospitals for treatment.
Bhat, who is resident of Bemina, said there is huge variation in rates.
“The proprietors of hospitals charge as per their will for surgeries and tests. The government should fix reasonable rates so that patients are not charged with hefty sums for surgeries and consultations,” he added.
Director Health Services Kashmir, Dr Saleem-ur-Rehman, said that he did a thorough exercise for regulation of rates before submitting the report to the government.
“We talked to lot of private practitioners and doctors. We recommended that there shall be reasonable rates,” Dr Rehman said.
Presently, he said, they can’t raid any hospital for charging exorbitant to patients.
“Once the rates are fixed, we too can take action,” he added.

 
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Jaish almost wiped out, no one willing to head it: Army

Mudassir Kuloo

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Srinagar, Apr 24: Army on Wednesday claimed the government forces have “severely targeted” the militants for the last few months and Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) militant outfit was “almost wiped out with no one willing to take over it”.

Addressing a press conference here, GOC 15 Corps, KJS Dhillon, who was accompanied by Director General of Police (DGP) Dilbagh Singh, IGP Kashmir SP Pani, and IG CRPF Zulfikar Hassan, said that 69 militants have been killed and 12 of them arrested so far this year.

“Post Pulwama incident, 41 militants have been killed and out of them 25 belonged to Jaish-e-Mohammed, 13 of them were Pakistanis while 13 were A+ category,” Dhillon said.

 

The GOC 15 Corps claimed that they have targeted JeM leadership.

“The situation now is so that no one is coming forward to take over the leadership of JeM in the valley,” he said.

“Even after Pakistan’s best efforts, we will continue to suppress JeM. The operations against the militants will continue with full vigour and we will not let militancy rise up,” he said, while appealing the local militants to surrender.

“Recruitment of local militants has gone down. In addition, those who surrender, we will take care of their security,” he said.

Dhillon also advised civilians not to rush to the encounter sites.

Asked about the bi-weekly restrictions on civilian traffic on the Highway, he replied, “This is just a temporary measure. There are now relaxations on the civilian traffic.”

On the occasion, the DGP said 272 militants were killed in the state during 2018 and a “large number was apprehended.”

He too claimed that the local recruitment in militant outfits had declined.

“2018 was generally a successful year. There has been less ‘law and order’ problem. We brought many youth (who had joined militancy) back to their homes,” the DGP claimed.

“Elections have been conducted peacefully in the state because of a well-planned security grid. Voter turnover at 13 percent in Anantnag district is not less. People voted despite threats, no one can be forced to vote,” he said.

Asked there were reports that 11 youth had gone missing in south Kashmir during the last one month, the IGP Kashmir said, “Few had gone missing but returned. They had gone missing for other reasons, not to join militancy.”

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Held Pak militant paraded before media

‘Chota Dujana was active in Srinagar for over a year’

Mudassir Kuloo

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Srinagar, Apr 24: Police on Wednesday presented a Pakistani militant Mohammad Waqar, alias Chota Dujana before the media, who, they claimed, was arrested from Pattan area in Baramulla on Monday.

During a press conference here, the militant was briefly allowed to respond to media.

“My name is Mohammad Waqar, resident of Miana Mohalla Punjab in Pakistan. I underwent a four-month militant training there,” he said.

 

 “I was told that Kashmiris are harassed, women are assaulted and Muslims are not allowed to offer prayers in Masjids. But I did not find any such thing here,” he replied when asked why had he picked up arms.

The militant was soon moved away.

SSP Baramulla, Abdul Wahid, said Waqar was affiliated with Lashkar-e-Toiba and had arrived in Kashmir in July 2017.

“He was operating in Srinagar for over a year now,” the officer said.

He added that the militant was travelling in a vehicle along with a Kashmiri when they were intercepted by the police near Mirgund, Pattan.

“They were chased and arrested near Chainabal Pattan,” he said.

The SSP said that as per their preliminary investigations, the militant was given shelter in old city as well as uptown areas of Srinagar.

“His plan was to resurrect militancy in Baramulla,” Wahid said.

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Malik sent to judicial custody till May 24

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New Delhi, Apr 24: A Delhi court Wednesday sent the Jammu and Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF) chief Yasin Malik, arrested in connection with the alleged funding case, to judicial custody till May 24.

The Tihar jail authorities have also moved an application seeking direction to produce Malik through video conferencing due to security concerns.

The family of Yasin Malik, said on Saturday, that the JKLF chief had fallen ill and was shifted to a Delhi hospital after he went on a hunger strike to protest against his “illegal” detention.

 

Earlier this month, Malik was brought to Delhi from Jammu and was later arrested by NIA in connection with an alleged case related to the funding of militant and separatist groups in Jammu and Kashmir. He was produced in a special court which remanded him in NIA’s custody till April 22.

Malik was shifted to Delhi’s Tihar Jail after NIA secured his production remand.  The JKLF chief was taken into preventive custody in February by the J&K police and lodged in Jammu’s Kot Balwal jail.

Malik organisation JKLF was banned last month by the Centre.

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