Jammu and Kashmir High Court on Tuesday sought status report from government in connection with work progress for setting up of operation theatres for cancer patients in the State Cancer Institute.
The HC observed that besides exploring possibilities for carrying out surgeries of cancer patients on regular basis.
Hearing a Public Interest Litigation (PIL) on the issue of lack of facilities to the cancer patients in SKIMS, the division bench of Justice Ali Mohammad Magrey and Justice Sanjeev Kumar sought status report from the were directed to submit the report within two weeks of time.
The Counsel Syed Musaib representing the petitioner submitted before the court that due to the insufficient infrastructure, the needs of cancer patients are not being catered. He also submitted that due to the increasing number of cancer patients, there is a need for more operation theatres so that timely treatment can be given, but unfortunately nothing is being done on the ground.
He submitted that the authorities be directed to ensure that surgeries are carried out on daily basis.
The state counsel for the respondents informed the court that they have set up cancer treating facility at Sher-i-Kashmir Institute of Medical Science (SKIMS) and are constructing another operation theatre for which it will take time.
State Counsel sought time from the court to file the status report with regard to work progress for setting up of operation theatres for cancer patients in the State Cancer Institute.
Earlier, the court had sought report from the authorities for exploring possibilities for carrying out daily surgeries of cancer patients besides had sought action taken report with regard to the construction of the operation theatres and shall indicate the timeline within which the operation theaters will be constructed.
The directions came after the petitioners Counsel Syed Musaib informed court that only four surgeries are being performed in Srinagar per week due to the insufficient number of operation theatres.
The petitioner, Rabia Khurshid, who herself is battling with cancer, has undergone five cancer removal surgeries on various occasions and believes the State has failed to provide any proper infrastructure or assistance as was due to a citizen in a welfare state.
Rabia Khurshid through her son, advocate Syed Musaib filed PIL seeking directions from the court for setting up of operation theatres for cancer patients in the State Cancer Institute.
The PIL states that over the years there has been drastic increase in the number of malignancies cases in the state and to cater to the needs of growing population with growing cancer cases, “State Cancer Institute” an exclusive centre for cancer patients was proposed by the State Government with the assistance of Central Government.
Presently, there is long list of cancer patients waiting for their turn to be operated on; unfortunately there are only two days assigned for cancer surgeries at SKIMS. Patients either die in the waiting list as a result or the cancer ends up doing an irreparable damage to their bodies.
Petitioner submits that due to shortage of operation theatres assigned to the Department of Surgical Oncology, who are able to perform only surgeries twice a week, which has lead to rise in the waiting list of the cancer patients, most of whom die in the waiting list for want of timely intervention. Petitioner prays that the authorities be directed to comply with the Guidelines for Strengthening of Tertiary Care of Cancer as provided by Government of India in letter and spirit.