Patna: The state assembly on Wednesday passed by voice vote two amendment Bills related to Bihar Clinical Establishment (Registration and Regulation) Act, 2011, and Bihar Panchayat Raj Act, 2006, paving way for probe by a medical team into complaints lodged by patients or their attendants and holding the 2016 panchayat elections on the basis of Census 2011, respectively.
The Bihar Clinical Establishment (Registration and Regulation) Amendment Bill, 2014, proposed that the district magistrate (DM) concerned will set up a team of doctors to probe negligence, in any, by private hospitals and nursing homes in treatment of a patient and take appropriate action in this regard on the basis of the said report.
BJP members Arun Shankar, Vinod Narayan Jha, Kanhaiya Kumar, Usha Vidyarthi and Jawahir Prasad recommended inclusion of an administrative official and SP-rank police official in the probe team, apart from the binding that the probe report be submitted in a time frame (one to three months) and FIR is lodged in tune with the “suitable’ provisions of the Indian Penal Code, so that proper justice is done to both the patient and complainant in tune with the law of the land.
Leader of opposition Nand Kishore Yadav maintained that the framing of the Act had been initiated under his tenure as state health minister and it was aimed at safeguarding the interests of the patients. However, environment and forest minister P K Shahi said the preamble of the Act showed that it had been conceived and framed to protect both the clinical establishments and doctors concerned from vandals and periodic incidents of such kind.
With respect to Panchayat Raj Amendment Bill, the state government maintained that the delimitation of panchayats would entail a huge expenditure and, therefore, the Bill had been brought to facilitate the 2016 and 2021 panchayat elections on the basis of Census 2011.
1.21 crore toilets by 2019: Public health and engineering department (PHED) minister Mahachandra Prasad Singh said the state government would provide toilets to the remaining 1.21 crore households by 2019. Singh, giving the government’s reply to the special house debate in the assembly, said toilets had been provided to 40.27 lakh families so far.
As per the revision in the estimates made by the Centre, the state was being provided Rs 5,500 as cost of provision and installation of a toilet in a household. Moreover, the state government is also providing Rs 4,600 from its own coffers to the above poverty line (APL) families under Rammanohar Lohia Sanitation Scheme for the construction of toilets, Singh said.
He said the state government is acting in tandem with the departments concerned to free the state from open defecation practice by 2019, the year the country would be celebrating the 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi.
CM Jitan Ram Manjhi has already fixed the target of getting 20 lakh toilets constructed annually. JD (U) member Izhar Ahmad initiated the debate and leader of opposition Nand Kishore Yadav, among others, also participated in it.