Staff Reporter

Installed 11 units in five hospitals, two chest clinics: Audit report

`Incinerator at Ayurvedic Hospital, Haiderpur where no hazardous waste is generated' `Eight surplus incinerators that were not at all required'

NEW DELHI: In yet another glaring example of misuse of public money, auditors in the Municipal Corporation of Delhi have found that the civic body wasted Rs.2.30 crores by installing surplus incinerators, including one at an Ayurvedic hospital where no hazardous medical waste is generated.

Following the Supreme Court's March 1996 order directing all authorities concerned to install incinerators or safe devices for proper disposal of hospital wastes in all hospitals and nursing homes with 50 or more beds, the MCD cleared proposals worth Rs.5 crores to install incinerators in all hospitals and chest clinics besides purchasing four trucks.

Subsequently, 11 incinerators were installed in five hospitals and two chest clinics spread across the city. However, the audit report for 2002-03 found that the civic body installed as many as eight surplus incinerators that were not at all required, resulting in a loss of over Rs.2 crores to the MCD. For instance, two incinerators were installed at MVID hospital at Kingsway Camp which were of no use, while only one incinerator each was required at Hindu Rao, RBTB and Swami Dayanand hospitals, but the MCD installed two each in all these hospitals. The MCD also went ahead and installed an incinerator at the Ayurvedic Hospital at Haiderpur where no hazardous waste is generated. The audit report also mentions that at couple of places -- chest clinics at Patparganj and Nehru Nagar -- incinerators were lying unused, while at other hospitals, incinerators were operating below the estimated quantity of waste generated there.

The audit report states that the log books maintained in RBTB hospital and chest clinic at Patparganj revealed that in these hospitals incinerators did not function for 113 days and one year respectively during August 1997 and May 2002, resulting in an expenditureof Rs.2 lakhs.