‘Reach health card distribution target in 3 months’
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‘Reach health card distribution target in 3 months’

July 7, 2022

Mysore/Mysuru: The slow pace of distribution of Ayushman Bharat – Arogya Karnataka (AB-ARK) health cards in the district, an ambitious initiative of Central and the State Governments aimed at ensuring health for all, came to the fore at the DISHA (District Development Coordination and Monitoring Committee) meeting held at the Zilla Panchayat (ZP) Hall  this morning.

MP Pratap Simha chaired the meeting. Deputy Commissioner (DC) Dr. Bagadi Gautham, Mysuru City Corporation (MCC) Commissioner G. Lakshmikantha Reddy, ZP Dy. Secretary Prem Kumar, District Health Officer (DHO) Dr. K.H. Prasad and other officials attended the meeting.

Soon as the meeting began, Pratap Simha asked the health officials on the statistics regarding the progress made in the  issuance of AB-ARK health cards in the district. Upon receiving inputs from the officials, Simha wanted to know why only 10 lakh cards have been distributed while the set target is 26 lakhs, despite having the necessary infrastructure and manpower to carry out the task.

DHO Dr. Prasad said that 10 lakh cards have been distributed thus far in the district and cited COVID vaccination drive, Polio campaign etc., as the reason for 16 lakh backlog.

Upon hearing the DHO, DC Dr. Gautham suggested Dr. Prasad to hold ‘AB-ARK Health Cards Distribution Melas’ across the district  every Tuesday and to achieve the set target of 26 lakh in three months from now. He also directed the DHO to give widespread publicity for this distribution drive for total success.

Referring to the status of Multi-Speciality Hospital on KRS Road and the progress regarding renovation of K.R. Hospital, the MP and the DC sought inputs from the concerned health officials. The DC directed K.R. Hospital Medical Superintendent Dr. B.L. Nanjundaswamy to prepare a detailed list of all the equipment that are further  needed and the necessary manpower and submit the same to the MP, who in turn will take up the matter with the concerned authorities at the Government level.

Taking up the issue of poor lighting on the Ring Road, Simha gave strict instructions to the MCC authorities to ensure that all street-lights  on the entire stretch of the Ring Road are in order by Dasara, which is three months away. MP Simha further said that the issue of naming Mandakalli Airport after Nalwadi Krishnaraja Wadiyar is most likely to come up at the next Cabinet meeting which is scheduled to take place in a couple of days.

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Later, the MP asked MCC Commissioner Lakshmikantha Reddy on the progress of water-meter installation drive. Reddy said that the MCC has launched a mega drive for new water connections and legalisation of illegal water connections by installing 2,000 to 3,000 water-meters every month. All measures are being taken to ensure that there are no illegal or unauthorised water connections and pilferage of water in the city, he added.

Regarding traffic congestion on Hunsur Road, especially on the stretch between Hinkal Junction and Field Marshal K.M. Cariappa Circle (Metropole Circle), the MP wanted to know what action the local authorities had taken for easing the congestion. The MP directed the authorities to co-ordinate with the Police for fixing a time period between two traffic signals on the road so as to prevent lining up of vehicles at traffic signals, with vehicle density on this busy stretch  increasing by the day.

The MP got irked when the officials gave inputs that no expenses have been recorded for road development works that were taken up under Gram Sadak scheme in the year 2021-22. Pointing out that the Government had sanctioned Rs. 30 crore for the scheme, he wanted to know the progress of the works and what the Engineering staff were doing. The ZP Executive Engineer (EE) replied saying that works are under progress, but have been slowed down because of incessant rains and other unfavourable  conditions and that the statistics on the spending of the grants would be made available soon. Taking the EE to task, he directed  the official not to make any more delay and  said that the authorities must come up with full details of the expenditure and the progress of the works in the next meeting.

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DC Dr. Bagadi Gautham instructed the ZP Deputy Secretary to hold Gram Sadak progress review meeting every week and ensure that the targets in all categories of works are met without any further delay.

Forest Officials said that the tiger population in Nagarhole forest is estimated at 135 and there are about 800 to 1,000 wild elephants in the forest, according to the movements captured in cameras. The officials attributed the increase in wild elephant population to the protection and other allied measures taken by the Forest Department.

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