SRINAGAR: The Jammu and Kashmir National Conference Member of Parliament from Anantnag Hasnain Masoodi on Friday sought augmentation of the public healthcare system and strengthening of District Child Protection Units (DCPU) across Jammu and Kashmir.
Masoodi, participating in the discussion in Lok Sabha on Health and Allied Workers Bill reminding the government that an exercise to regulate Health and Allied Workers would not get the desired results, unless the government sets up institutions to train the requisite workforce to supplement the existing inadequate manpower. Emphasizing that almost the entire rural population and urban poor depend on the public healthcare system, it is important to have Paramedics like radiology Assistants, Lab technicians, Dialysis Assistants etc available at least at PHC, Sub District Hospital level. “The situation on ground in Jammu and Kashmir is far from satisfactory, it was pointed out. Therefore the government should establish at least one Paramedical College in each district and create opportunities for the available trained and expected to be trained manpower,” he said.
Masoodi expressing reservations to the amendments in the Juvenile Justice Act that provide for centralization of powers under the Act in a District Magistrate stated that a District with different roles is overburdened and may have little time for a sensitive issue like child care and child protection. He asked the government to instead strengthen the District Child Protection Unit and post a senior officer with a commitment to the cause as District Child Protection Officer. He reminded the Minister that child rights were a priority for Jammu and Kashmir and the Constitution of Jammu and Kashmir was the first such document in the Sub-Continent that recognized a happy childhood and free and compulsory education till 14. While prescribing the high academic standards was a welcome step, Masoodi cautioned that the vacant positions would attract the talent available in the marketplace only if better emoluments were offered. Earlier responding to a question asked by Masoodi, the Minister of Mines and Minerals informed Masoodi that an amount of Rs 33000 crore was collected on account of Mineral Fund in Jammu and Kashmir during 20-21 and out of it Rs 23,000 crore spent. He was assured that he would be associated with the use of funds collected during the current financial year.
Masoodi stated that Jammu and Kashmir as a conflict zone witnessed large scale violence during the last three decades giving rise to grave mental health issues and asked the government to strengthen the mental healthcare system.