India’s CPWD to build psychiatric hospital in South Sudan

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New Delhi, Aug 5 (IANS) After constructing the Afghan Parliament building in Kabul, India’s Central Public Works Department (CPWD) has now taken up the challenging task of building a Rs 120 crore psychiatric-care hospital in war-ravaged South Sudan’s capital Juba.

“The Indo-South Sudan Freindship Psychiatric Hospital will come as a boon to a country torn by civil war that is in the dire need of mental healthcare to help those affected with post-traumatic stress disorders and India has come forward to provide the necessary facilities,” a senior CPWD official said told IANS.

The society in the newly-created country — that broke off from Sudan — is under great stress and the WHO has recommended the setting up of such modern mental healthcare facilities, the official added.

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Since gaining independence in 2011, the fledgling South Sudan government has been attempting to build a state from scratch, leaving health services largely provisional and mental health programmes all but non-existent.

The original estimate of the hospital was Rs 140 crore but this was revised to Rs 120 crore after the intervention of the External Affairs Ministry. The design of the three-storeyed building, consisting of four wings, will be finalised after the visit of a team of CPWD engineers and architects to the proposed site at Juba.

Besides the CPWD, India’s premier AIIMS hospital is also actively involved in the project. While CPWD would construct the hospital, AIIMS is involved in working out the facilities to be provided and will train the doctors and paramedical staff required.

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The proposed hospital is expected to provide facilities, staff and treatment for those in need of mental healthcare, the official said.

In another difficult area, India had initiated the Afghan Parliament in 2007 as a mark of friendship and cooperation to help rebuild war-torn Afghanistan. Prime Minister Narendra Modi had inaugurated the new Afghan Parliament building on December 25, 2015.

(Arun Kumar Das can be contacted at [email protected])

–IANS

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