A contingent of government forces, recently brought to the state, has been shifted to under-construction 500-bedded maternity and children hospital at Bemina here, a move set to further delay completion of the ambitious project.
A source said personnel of Sashastra Seema Bal (SSB) started constructing bunkers and toilets in the premises of the under-construction hospital last week. The source said hundreds of personnel have moved to the premises and occupied at least three of its floors.
He said that presence of forces in the hospital area hashampered movement of laborers and other people working on the project. "Theworkforce has been considerably reduced now," he said.
As per an official of Government Medical College (GMC)Srinagar, the tiling and retro-fitting of the hospital that was currently goingon has been stopped after forces moved in.
The official said although GMC administration had pleadedwith the Government that no forces be allowed to shift in the building, therequest was not paid heed to.
The official said that due to presence of forces, the workon the building was set to take a hit. "We cannot have construction work goingon at a place where we have people living," he said.
Principal GMC Srinagar Prof Samia Rashid expressed anguishat the move. She said the college had written to Government requesting not tostation any forces in the building. She however said she was not aware of thestatus of the plea.
"We were hoping to get possession of this hospital sometimethis year," she said.
The 500-bedded hospital, originally conceived as a maternityhospital, is also being planned as a super-specialty pediatric hospital.
Senior superintendent of Police (Srinagar), Haseeb Mughalsaid the decision regarding accommodation of forces was taken by districtadministration.
"Our job is to provide water and power facilities whereverit is decided to house them," he said. He added that the building had beenoccupied "temporarily" and would be vacated when the elections are over.
District commissioner Srinagar, Shahid Iqbal Chaudhary saidthat forces arriving for poll duty were being accommodated"temporarily". "Any accommodation being occupied currently istemporary and does not affect the institution," he said.