Hyderabad

Owaisi wants new ₹1,000-crore hospital in place of OGH

The Osmania General Hospital in Hyderabad   | Photo Credit: RAMAKRISHNA G.

Hyderabad MP Asaduddin Owaisi on Monday visited the Osmania General Hospital and demanded that the State government build a new hospital in the area on 35,00,000 square feet at a cost of ₹1,000 crore.

“We demand that the Chief Minister sanction a new building. We are not at all concerned about the heritage building. We are concerned about people’s lives. If you want to keep the building, keep it; If you want to demolish it, do so,” said the MP who spoke about the dilapidated condition of the building.

The OGH is a Grade-II B notified building under Regulation 13 of Hyderabad Urban Development Authority and enjoys protection under the Telangana High Court ruling in the Errum Manzil Case. The heritage building was designed by Vincent Esch was completed in 1925 and transformed the Musi riverfront with a number of secular buildings including the City College, Telangana High Court and Kachiguda Railway station. The architectural idiom known as Indo-Sarcenic style became associated with Hyderabad after the construction of these buildings.

Citizens and heritage activists reacted with shock at the idea of demolition and replacement of the OGH. “It is part of Telangana’s heritage and identity. It is a heritage building for a reason and any replacement won’t have any value. Hyderabad is a creation of many dynasties and it is reflected in the skyscape. There can be no trade off on that,” said Anuradha Reddy, convenor of Indian National Trust for Art and Cultural Heritage (INTACH), Hyderabad.

Incidentally, a team of INTACH officials, including structural engineers, had inspected the building and suggested remedial measures to conserve the structure.

The legions of alumni from OGH are also not pleased with demand for a new building in place of the older one. “The hospital is a key to the health of old city. There are leakages only in a some places but the whole building has been shut down and there is zero maintenance. It can be completely functional with minimal effort,” said Iqbal Jaweed, a doctor who had made a representation to the Chief Minister in 2019.

At that time, the plan to demolish the building was shelved and a new plan to construction additional towers as an extension along with restoration and conservation of OGH was floated. In 2020, flood waters entered the OGH building after a botched road laying work in the southern part.


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Printable version | Jul 25, 2021 12:44:33 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Hyderabad/owaisi-wants-new-1000-crore-hospital-in-place-of-ogh/article34895678.ece

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