Agitators threaten to launch indefinite dharna if the public demand is not conceded
Activists of the BJP on Wednesday staged a dharna in front of the major gate of MKCG Medical College campus which has been closed down by the authorities for general public. The closure of the major gate of the medical college campus in front of the new bus stand of the city has caused concern to the inhabitants of the city as well as the people coming to this only referral medical centre of south Orissa.
Authorities of the medical college locked the gate since September 8. Several organisations of the city, including Ganjam Bar Association, Ganjam Vikash Manch, and city unit of the Congress also protested against the closure of the gate.
The BJP agitators were led by former deputy speaker of State Assembly Ram Chandra Panda. Mr. Panda said, “It is an irony that around Rs. 50 lakh was spent on reconstruction of the gate along with a decorative arch along with security posts and it was closed for the public. If the authorities wanted the gate to be closed they could have closed it down with a wall at low expenditure rather than opting for wasting public money.”
Berhampur Sub-Collector Ajit Sahu reached the spot to hold discussions with the BJP agitators. The agitators said they would launch indefinite dharna in front of the gate if it was not opened up for the public.
Authorities of the medical college contend that closure of the gate would put check on entry of unscrupulous elements to the campus. The large campus of the medical college and hospital has three gates including its main gate. One other gate is located near the front gate and it is only open for two wheelers. The gate which has been closed now was a major entry point for patients and their relatives from outside who get down at the bus stand. Now they have to traverse two km to enter the campus through the main gate.
Apart from the patients and relatives getting down from buses closure of this gate has also affected patients who come by vehicles from other parts of south Orissa on NH217 to the hospital. Now they also have to travel extra distance.
Citizens of the city have criticised closure of the major gate of a public place on the pretext of security. Police and administration could have increased security rather than closing down the gate for the public for whom the medical college hospital is intended, say the public.