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SAHIWAL: Chief Minister Usman Buzdar on Tuesday visited a shrine and a health facility in parts of Punjab.

In Pakpattan, the chief minister visited the shrine of Baba Farid to pay homage to the saint. He laid a floral wreath at the shrine and offered ‘Nawafil’ in Masjid-i-Auliya.

He came here by helicopter and routine visitors to the shrine were asked to stay away due to security reasons. The jammers were operational in and around the shrine and police forcibly closed the shops in the vicinity.

The chief minister interacted with journalists outside the shrine but parried questions about the incident of DPO’s transfer and death of a girl at the DHQ hospital.

Buzdar orders inquiry into child death controversy

He also met the commissioner, a PTI parliamentarian from Arifwala and other party leaders.

A woman, Walayat Bibi, who belongs to Chak Shah Khagga, got an opportunity to meet the chief minister and complained about alleged illegal occupation of her land by some members of an influential family. The CM asked the DC to submit a report within three days.

Visit to hospital

The chief minister visited the Tehsil Headquarters (THQ) hospital of Mian Channu and inquired after the health of the patients admitted there.

He reached Chak 114/15L by helicopter and later went to Mian Channu by road and visited the hospital. He inspected various wards including the emergency ward and inquired after the health of the patients. He also checked the availability of medicines and machinery and asked about the standard of medical facilities provided to the patients.

A number of complaints were made to the CM about the missing facilities and the attitude of the doctors towards the patients. The family of a patient who lost her life on Monday blamed Dr Muhammad Aslam for negligence. The chief minister directed the authorities to inquire into the matter and submit a report to him in this regard.

There were complaints that the patients and their attendants faced hardship due to the security protocol. As two-year-old girl Komal lost her life during CM’s visit, her family alleged the doctors were busy in the protocol of the chief minister and did not check the girl who eventually lost her life for want of treatment. The family also protested outside the emergency ward against the hospital administration.

Officials claimed that the girl was brought in a critical condition and doctors tried their best to save her but to no avail.

Khanewal Deputy Commissioner Ishfaq Ahmed Chaudhry constituted a three-member committee comprising Mian Channu assistant commissioner, the THQ hospital medical superintendent and deputy district officer (health) to probe the matter and fix the responsibility. The DC told the media that the death of the girl had no link with the visit of the chief minister to the hospital.

The spokesman for the Punjab government also denied that the death took place during the visit of the chief minister to the THQ hospital. In a handout, the spokesman claimed that the girl had died a day earlier.

Published in Dawn, August 29th, 2018