Aizawl, Aug 3 (IANS) The president's secretariat has asked the Mizoram government to activate a primary health centre, constructed 20 years ago in Mizoram's Chakma tribal-inhabited region but non-operational since then, an NGO said Friday.
The action was taken in response to a memorandum submitted to President Pranab Mukherjee by the Mizoram Chakma Development Forum (MCDF), an NGO looking after the Chakma tribals' welfare.
MCDF president Hemanta Larma said in a statement that the president's secretariat asked Mizoram Chief Secretary Vanhela Pachuau to take action to open the health centre at the earliest.
The Mizoram government had constructed the 20-bedded primary health centre in 1992 at Borpansury village bordering Bangladesh in Mizoram's Chakma region, 200 km east of Aizawl. Since then it has been lying vacant.
After lying abandoned for 20 years, the state government spent about Rs.1 crore to rebuild the only health centre in the area in 2010. Since then, no doctors or any other medical staffs have been posted in the centre and it is still lying in a state of disuse, Larma added.
MCDF general secretary Paritosh Chakma said: Lack of healthcare is a cause of great difficulty, hardship and pain to the 12,000 tribals in the area. Several people die of preventable diseases every year.
The poor health service is compounded by bad road connectivity, forcing people to take a 10-hour mountainous road journey to Aizawl to seek any medical help, he said.
The MCDF said they were forced to move the president after a series of letters, agitations and appeals to Mizoram government led to no positive response.