Islamabad-National Institute of Rehabilitation Medicine (NIRM) is still waiting to acquire the plot it purchased from Capital Development Authority (CDA) to extend the medical facility for the patients, The Nation learned on Friday.

NIRM is the only public sector rehabilitation center of the city established for the physically disabled people and is providing the healthcare free of cost. 

The hospital is functional under Capital Administration and Development Division (CADD) and has played a key role in the rehabilitation of the disabled people in 2005 earthquake.

According to official sources, the hospital is struggling since the last one decade to get acquisition of the plot allotted to the facility in 2003, on the recommendation of the then president.

“Despite receiving payment, the hospital is deprived of the plot and the extension is hanging in the balance,” said an official.

The documents with The Nation said that 4167 square yard plot was offered to the hospital in January 2003 and the Capital Development Authority had received the premium amount of Rs4700000 through Auditor General Pakistan Revenue (AGPR) cheque in June 2005.

The official said that CDA however, sent a letter to the hospital to pay the surcharge for the late payment and demanded more amount for acquisition of the plot.

The document said that Rs1347260 was more paid to the CDA in the month of July 2007, but the acquisition process was again not completed by the Capital Development Authority.

Official said that surprisingly, instead of handing over the plot to the hospital, the CDA in 2014 issued a corringendum and reduced the area of the plot from 4167 square yard to 2777.77.

“The big cut in land was challenged on all forums including the senate and national assembly standing committees to get the allocated land but all cries fell on deaf ears,” the official.

Sources also said that the non-allotment of the plot was also discussed in the audit para of Public Accounts Committee (PAC) meeting held in 2016 and CDA was issued directions to allot the whole 4167 square yards plot to the NIRM.

The official said that despite recommendations of PAC, the plot was not handed over to the NIRM and the issue was shelved in CDA.

Director NIRM Fazal-e-Moula informed The Nation that the patients’ influx at NIRM in 2008 was 40 persons per day, which in 10 years reached to 1000 in Out Door Patients (OPD).

He said NIRM is currently working with 160 staff members and has 100 beds which will be increased to 300 beds hospital in future if is extended as per plan.

Director NIRM also said that the hospital aims to construct a nursing hostel, new wards and establish an artificial limbs center in future but ‘all plans are pending’ due to non-availability of the land.

An official also informed The Nation the facility despite of being attached department of the CADD is mostly functional on ‘donations’.

The official said that recently hospital has received spine injury diagnosing machine worth of Rs3.5million in donation, while a C.T scan machine of Rs10million was also donated to the center.

The official said that after the visit of Chief Justice Saqib Nisar, PIMS and Polyclinic hospitals are being facilitated and patients are being treated.

“But, NIRM is still struggling financially to provide the facilities and sometimes doctors have to bear the expense of a patient from their own pocket,” he said.  

Director NIRM said that the hospital has a total budget of Rs260million and 220 million are allocated for the recurring expenditures.

“Hospital has to manage the remaining expenses for the development of patients’ medical facilities in Rs40million only,” he said.

Spokesperson Capital Development Authority Safdar Shah said that he has to look into the case and cannot comment as why the acquisition process not completed.