11 days ago

Snail pace of the construction work

Kushtia Medical College Hospital’s inauguration faces uncertainty

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Kushtia Medical College Hospital’s (KMCH) inauguration is facing uncertainty due to the snail pace of the construction work over the last decade.

Medical equipment purchased from abroad - costing over Tk 6.5 million - are left unused.

Though the authorities concerned set several dates, including June 30 this year, to open the medical college hospital with its outpatient department, they had to remain content with completion of 85 per cent work, disheartening locals.

According to sources, the construction work of the medical college hospital at a cost of Tk 2.75 billion was scheduled to end on June 30 in 2018, but due to negligence of contractors and manifold irregularities, the construction cost rose to about Tk 6.82 billion with repeated extensions.

Construction work also got delayed when a worker died after an under-construction roof fell in 2019.

On October 05 in 2021, the Executive Committee of the National Economic Council (ECNEC) approved an amended Development Project Proposal (DPP) for the medical college hospital.

Mushfiqur Rahman, storekeeper of the hospital, said the imported medical equipment may go out of order as those are lying idle for seven to eight months.

Contacted, Kushtia Public Works Department's Executive Engineer Jahidul Islam said they as well as the Health Ministry sent letters to the contractors asking to end the works soon.

He said the contractors were fined several times for violation of the construction law and negligence. So far 85 per cent work has been completed and it will hopefully end by December this year.

It was learned that four contracting firms obtained the construction works through tenders. Of them, one M/S Jahirul Ltd bagged the lion's share of the work.

Contractor Jahirul Islam said the construction work of the hospital began in 2013, though it got approval in 2008.

He said the lack of timely financial allotments from the authorities concerned delayed the work and increased the cost multiple times.

The construction will end by the end of the year, he hoped.

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