PESHAWAR - Instead to improve the present condition of Paraplegic Centre by the provincial government, the Peshawar Development Authority demolished the building of the lone healthcare facility of the disabled people which provides free of cost medical facilities to the victims of natural and man-made disasters.

Composed of 78 beds, Paraplegic Centre Peshawar is the lone institute of the country, which provides free of cost, medical, surgical and nursing care, along with physical, occupational, vocational and psycho-social rehabilitation services to patients with spinal cord injuries from all over the country as well as Afghanistan.

Established in Afghan War in 1989 it got admitted the first patient of war victim in 1984 and after that time numbers of patients were brought to this renowned centre to get treatment and physiotherapy facilities.

Earlier various donor agencies were supporting the centre, including GTZ Germany and ICRC along with others, however later government also allocated some funds for this purpose. Between 1995 and 2003 this centre was extremely in poor condition and it was almost at the verge of collapse when the incumbent Chief Executive Syed Mohammad Ilyas left his duty in USA and promised to make it a refutable centre of the country being a volunteer.

But unfortunately not knowing about its services for the physically disabled people, the Peshawar Development Authority staff started demolishing its building with support of administration despite this that this centre had approved map of the Peshawar Development Authority.

Talking to The Nation, Mushtaq Hussain reception coordinator of the centre, said that PDA gave them notice to stop working and after that we stop work on the new section. But despite abiding the directives of the PDA, the lower cadre staff reached the site and without any reason started demolishing the building. He said that the PDA does not know the importance of this vital centre where common and poor people come and get free of cost treatment and physiotherapy facilities.

Currently the Peshawar Paraplegic centre has 78 beds and the recent construction work has been started to further expand its building. He said that after promulgation of 2009 Act, this centre become part of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Health Department. GRs760 million but despite of this the centre needs extra funds of donor agencies to manage its expenses.

The patients of the paraplegic centre despite their disabilities, staged protest demonstration on main road and criticised the blind step of PDA against the home of disabled people. They said that instead of demolishing government should extend the service of this centre to other parts of the country.

They said on one hand a great number of people with different kind of disabilities from Sindh, Punjab, Balochistan, FATA, Kashmir and Afghanistan visit the centre while on the other hand government is demolishing the hospital which has treated thousands of patients with quality care facilities.

Later when the media personnel visited the area and criticized PDA for their action against this center without any violation of the rules, Official of Peshawar Development Authority hold dialogue with patients and paraplegic administration and announced to reconstruct the damaged potion from PDA fund.