SC paves way for Polyclinic expansion in Islamabad

Lifts stay order, directs IHC to resolve case; disposes of Aabpara case on assurance that road opens by Feb 28


Our Correspondent January 16, 2019
PHOTO: FILE

ISLAMABAD: The top court on Tuesday paved the way for the expansion of a large tertiary care hospital in the federal capital after it vacated a stay order.

The court also directed the health department to resolve issues of the hospital.

This was directed by a three-member bench of the Supreme Court (SC), led by Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Mian Saqib Nisar, as it heard a case about appointments in the Federal Government Services Hospital (Polyclinic).

Terming Polyclinic one of the most important hospitals in the federal capital, CJP Nisar asked about the expansion of the hospital and the hiring of additional staff.

Federal Health Secretary Zahid Saeed told the court that a stay order is already in place over the extension of the hospital. With the SC having sought the files relating to the stay issued by the court at its last hearing, CJP Nisar remarked that land in the Argentina Park had been procured for the purpose of expanding the hospital.

He further said that the court has on past occasions directed to acquire the properties of those who had raised objections to the expansion of the hospital into the park.

Health delivery: SC concerned over lack of medicines in Polyclinic

Health facilities are a basic necessity, CJP Nisar noted, adding that the government must ensure the provision of essential services to the public.

In its order, the court noted that stay order had been issued many years ago and that it did not prove to be an obstacle in the hospital’s extension process. Despite that, the court directed the Islamabad High Court (IHC) — where a case pertaining to the hospital’s expansion is pending — to quickly decide the case.

Polyclinic doctors told the court that issues relating to the appointment of additional doctors were still unresolved. At this, the CJP remarked that the incumbent health secretary was a good man and would solve the problem. Saeed assured the court that the issue will be resolved as soon as the matter of deputation is solved.

Blocked road

In a separate case on the road blocked near Aabpara, the court was told that the road will be reopened by March.

A three-member bench of the SC, led by CJP Nisar, heard the suo motu case relating to the encroachment of the road near Aabpara in the federal capital.

During Tuesday’s hearing, the deputy attorney general told the court that traffic had been reopened on one side of the road. The other track they assured, will be reopened by February 28.

At this, the court disposed of the case. 

Published in The Express Tribune, January 16th, 2019.

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