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Coronavirus: Akij, Gonoshasthaya cancel emergency hospital plans

  • Published at 03:54 pm April 6th, 2020
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The hospital would have provided free treatment to Covid-19 patients

Akij Group’s plan of building a temporary emergency hospital, in collaboration with Gonoshasthaya Kendra, for the treatment of Covid-19 patients has been cancelled.

Inspired by China’s success in treating coronavirus infected patients by building temporary hospitals, Akij Group and Gonoshasthaya Kendra had wanted to build a similar kind of hospital through a joint venture.

Dr Zafrullah Chowdhury, one of the founders of the Gonoshasthaya Kendra, confirmed the cancellation to Dhaka Tribune.

“Bashundhara Group is going to build a 5,000-bed hospital, which is enough for patients in Dhaka," he replied when asked for the reason behind the decision to cancel the construction of their hospital.

"There is no need to build more hospitals in Dhaka for this purpose," he added.

However, some sources have claimed that the project has been cancelled as a section within the government was against the initiative.

Dr Md Aminul Hasan, director (hospital) of Directorate General of Health Services, said: "They can build their hospital however they want. We do not have any up to date information on what they are doing."

On March 28, Tejgaon residents held a protest demonstration at the hospital’s construction site, forcing the business conglomerate Akij Group to halt the construction work.

More than a hundred residents of the area gathered in the Tejgaon industrial area to protest the construction, defying the government’s directive to maintain social distancing amidst the coronavirus outbreak in the country.

They also attacked the construction workers during the hour-long demonstration, according to local police.

On March 29, several media outlets reported that the Akij Group resumed construction work after meeting with the local leaders and police, and settling the misunderstanding.

Earlier, Akij Group Managing Director Sheikh Bashir Uddin said the hospital would be built on the vacant plot of the industrial group next to the TVS motorcycle factory in Tejgaon.

He also said the hospital would treat Covid-19 patients free of charge.

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