Ranchi: The long-awaited project of the National Institute of Malaria Research (NIMR)—a research wing of the Indian Council for Medical Research (ICMR)–to set up a model research unit for Malaria and other diseases in Jharkhand could not become a reality yet.
The Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India, has signed an agreement with the Health Department of Jharkhand to set up the model research unit for eradication of Malaria about four years ago.
Officials said that the research institute could not be set up in the state for want of allocation of suitable land for it. They said that the State Health Department had identified the Community Health Centre, Angarha, as the suitable location for setting up of the research institute. The Central Public Works Department (CPWD) was allotted work to raise building infrastructure for it.
The CPWD could not start the construction work, as the Health Department was not the legal owner of the land of Angarha CHC, even though a family had donated it for opening of the hospital long ago. “We have pointed out the issue to the department once the land was allocated for the NIMR research institute. But nothing happened,” said a doctor at the CHC.
Central Govt funds for research unit
As part of the Centre’s drive to eliminate Malaria, the NIMR has set up 10 regional laboratories in malaria-affected areas across the country. These laboratories are equipped with advanced diagnostic tools. These units work with RNA extractor and Next Generation (NGS) advanced testing machines to identify the viruses. Officials said that apart from these state-of-the-art machines, the NIMR has proposed to install a cytokine machine, which detects the immunity of the body.
NIMR Centre & RIMS to engage in research
The proposed NIMR centre at Angarha is likely to engage with the Rajendra Institute of Medical Science (RIMS), Ranchi, for advance research. Once the NIMR research institute is functional at Angarha, a mobile laboratory would go to the infected areas and collect the samples of the patients for deeper analysis. The research institute will also be equipped with carrying out pathological and other tests for detection of disease like malaria, Japanese encephalitis and corona. In the absence of suitable infrastructure, costly machines for testing have been kept in a room and are getting damaged by rusting.
Dispute of land
The descendants of the social worker and landlord of Gondli Pokhar had donated 3acre and 29 decimal land to Angarha CHC. However, the absence of paper work to transfer the possession of land came to light in 2008, when the foundation stone of Model CHC was being laid. The family members have expressed no objection to the building of Model CHC and agreed to cooperate with the Government for paper work. However, they demanded that a statue of Mahesh Chaudhary, who donated the land, be installed in the hospital premises.
What the officials say?
Officials of the health department said that the Deputy Commissioner, Ranchi, has been apprised about the whole situation and asked to complete the formalities for transfer of land. “The concerned Circle Officer has been directed to meet the descendants of Mahesh Chaudhary and verify the documents at the earliest for transfer of ownership. The NIMR officials would be approach to set up the laboratories once the paper work is finished,” said an Under Secretary rank officer of the Health Department.