|The much-delayed Ayurveda panchakarma hospital project in Alappuzha is likely to get a new lease of life. Anitha Jacob, Director, Department of Indian Systems of Medicine, told The Hindu that the project would be revived soon. Mooted as a centre of excellence, with funding from the Ministry of Ayush, the facility, proposed to be set up on 1.64 acres of land at Valiya Chudukadu near here, remains in a half-completed stage. The construction of the main hospital building which commenced during the days of UPA II was halted midway due to shortage of funds and allegations against the firm entrusted with the work.|
“We have decided to revive the project. The firm initially entrusted with the construction of the hospital structure has informed their willingness to take up the project again. They have already prepared a revised estimate and has been submitted to the government for approval. The work will recommence once the Finance Department issues administrative sanction,” Dr. Anitha said.
She attributed the delay in executing the project to alleged irregularities in building construction. “There had been a probe into the allegations. No major lapses had been noticed, other than faults in three pillars of the building. The company has now promised to rectify it after getting nod to restart the work,” Dr. Anitha said.
At present, the Panchakarma hospital is functioning in a rented building with minimal facilities. Once the new building was ready, lakhs of rupees could be saved on rent every year. The hospital will have facilities including inpatient facilities.
“The previous government had sanctioned ₹4.65 crore for the project. But the project got delayed and our immediate focus is on completing the pending work. Once the hospital start functioning, we can approach the Union government for more funds as the cap on centre of excellence has now been raised to ₹10 crore. We can also urge them to elevate the facility as a research institute in the future,” said an official.