Nitish Kumar
Nitish Kumar
File Photo

Patna: Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar on Monday announced that all ciitzens of the state would be vaccinated against the raging coronavirus disease (COVID-19) free of cost.

He said that Bihar outnumbered other states when it comes to the coronavirus vaccination programme. In the first two phases, the 'Corona warriors' responded well, he said.

Addressing a function to mark the foundation stone laying ceremony of the world's second largest hospital at the Patna Medical College Hospital premises here, Nitish said that from the next month, over 27 crore people, of the age group of 50 or above, would be vaccinated.

The proposed redeveloped PMCH will have 5,500 beds, only second to the 10,000 at the Chang Gunga memorial hospital in China's Taoyuan. The redeveloped hospital will be constructed on the premises of the PMCH, which was set up in 1921 and was then known as Prince of Wales Medical College Hospital.

Nitish said the new hospital will have a helipad for the landing and take-off of 'air ambulances'. It will be linked to the Ashok Rajpath and the Ganga Oathaway through elevated roads.

The proposed hospital will have 360 studio apartments for the patients and their attendants. For the economically poor patients and attendants, a 715-room Dharmashala will also be constructed. Further, the premises will have the parking space for 4,000 vehicles and 60 modular operation theatres.

Dr BC Roy, the former chief minister of West Bengal, and Dr CP Thakur, the former union health minister, are some of the old boys of the Medical College.

PMCH Alumni association has opposed the demolition of the century-old building and said all historical institutions endeavour to preserve their heritage for the next generation, which will be robbed off seeing the heritage of Bihar's first medical college.

The iconic old heritage building is now proposed to be dismantled as part of redevelopment plan for the new hospital complex.

The association said that the new project has not gone down well with the PMCH alumni in Bihar or abroad, who have suggested that the existing building not be disturbed, said Dr Satyajeet Kumar Singh, association president.

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