Idrees Ali

J&K’s only Govt Unani College facing inordinate delay in completion

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Ganderbal, Feb 21: Jammu and Kashmir's only sanctioned Government Unani College in Ganderbal is yet to become functional, even though its construction was started 5 years ago in 2013.

According to the sources, the building for the  Government Unani College and its associated hospital, which is being  constructed by J&K housing board at an estimated cost of  32.50 crore in Nawabagh area of central Kashmir’s Ganderbal,  is almost complete but authorities are making no efforts to make the college operational.

Locals of Nawabagh said that they have provided around 80 Kanals of land to government for the said project. “The land was an important asset for us as our livestock would graze there. We offered the land happily to the government but our sacrifice is yet to bear fruit,” they said adding, “We were told that first of all hospital will be made functional and after that first academic batch will be started at the Unani college but nothing has been done so far; instead, the college building has been turned into the camp of forces."

Unani graduates who are also eagerly waiting for the opening of Unani College and its associated hospital said: “There are just two Unani colleges in Kashmir but not a single Government college of the sort.  These colleges are unable to accommodate the aspirants who want to pursue a degree in Unani medicine. The Ayurvedic College in Jammu and the Unani College in Ganderbal were sanctioned at the same time but the former was commissioned two years ago.”

Sources said 23.5 crore rupees have been utilized for construction of the college so far and with this amount three blocks of the college and 80% of its structure has been completed.

Sources within Directorate of Indian System of Medicine (ISM) (Ayush) J&K said, "ISM has got enough manpower to make the college functional. In order to start teaching the first academic batch, there is a requirement of keeping the associated hospital of the Unani College operational for at least two years."

"ISM J&K has already wasted a lot of time. Outpatient department (OPD) should have been made functional a longtime ago following which other departments could be made functional," they added.

When contacted Director ISM J&K said, "First of all there is a need to create posts for the Unani College and with this regard we have sent the proposal to health and medical education department. Creation of posts will be followed by recruitment processes and only then we can make the college functional."

When asked why it is taking so much time to complete the project, the Director replied, "Big projects are always time consuming. Hopefully, this year the college will become operational and I am making every possible effort for it."

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