Hospital faces power cut for violations

The Madras High Court on Thursday ordered disconnection of electricity by May 31 to floors beyond the third of the reportedly eight-storeyed ‘S’ block of Billroth Hospital on Lakshmi Talkies Road in Shenoy Nagar. The court also directed the hospital to refrain from admitting patients beyond the third floor.

Justices S. Vaidyanathan and Subramonium Prasad further directed the hospital to shift all patients who were not in serious condition from floors beyond the third floor, since the Chennai Metropolitan Development Authority (CMDA) had supposedly granted building plan permission only up to that floor.

The judges also appointed advocate T. Mohan as an Amicus Curiae to assist the court in deciding a public interest litigation petition filed by P. Krishnan, 49, a local resident, accusing the hospital of having constructed the building in violation of the building plan and the officials of turning a blind eye to the irregularity.

In his affidavit, the petitioner said the hospital was located in a mixed residential zone and abutting a 30-feet-wide road connecting the thickly populated areas of Shenoy Nagar and Aminjikarai with the National Highway EVR High Road, which was earlier known as the Poonamallee High Road.

He claimed that the hospital had constructed three blocks on its premises, and of them, the ‘S’ block was an eight-storeyed building, although the building plan had been obtained only for three floors. The basement of the building was supposed to be used for vehicle parking, but it was actually being used for the radiology department, he alleged.

The petitioner accused the hospital of forcing the visitors to park their cars on the road, besides making lorries supplying water to it to be parked on the pathway. It hinders free movement of traffic, he said and alleged that sufficient setback area had also not been provided around the buildings.

Asserting that the CMDA had conceded that there were deviations in the construction, he said the officials had still not taken action by citing a regularisation request pending with it. He said the Inspector of Lifts too was hesitant to take action on the premise, that any coercive step would affect the patients admitted in the hospital.

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