SHARAQPUR-Substandard and expensive edible items are being sold in the canteen of Tehsil Headquarters Hospital Sharaqpur, though the facility has been established to facilitate patients and their attendants.

According to reliable sources, unhygienic and substandard food items are being sold in THQ Hospital Sharaqpur at double rates. Different food items like biscuits, nimko, mineral water and soft drinks "of very poor quality" are being sold at double rates. According to some patients, owner and employees of the canteen-holder misbehave with customers often without any reason and the facility has been sealed twice for this reason in the recent past. The canteen administration also does not display rate list besides poor cleanliness condition on the canteen premises. According to the patients, the canteen-holder is being supported by the THQ Hospital's Admin officer Ali Raza. The patients, requesting anonymity, alleged that the admin officer receives illegal money from the canteen owner on monthly basis.

In his comment Admin Officer Ali Raza bragged that it's up to him to get the canteen closed or opened whenever he wishes. According to contract documents, the canteen contract has been awarded to the incumbent owner for the third consecutive time. Contacted THQ Hospital Sharaqpur MS Dr Ghulam Mustafa said that the canteen had been sealed twice before his posting, adding that he would seek explanation from the admin officer for the sale of substandard and expensive edible items in the canteen.

Owner of the canteen, however, denied all allegations when he was approached for his comment. People demanded the district administration to take notice of the situation and take effective steps to facilitate patients and their attendants.