CPM takes healthcare route to recovery

The CPM Kerala unit, badly battered in group fight and charged with a role in rebel leader Chandrashekharan’s murder, has resorted to an image refurbishing exercise by introducing palliative care service in all districts of the State.

Party sources said palliative care units had been registered in all districts under Charitable Societies Act. Though the CPM is calling the shots, it will not interfere in their day-to- day functioning. The units which are NGOs for practical purposes will be run either by the party members or party sympathisers. The job is mainly entrusted with those who have worked with People’s Planning projects.

“Service-minded” people are selected for the work. However, experience in party’s voluntary force is a pre-requisite. For women candidates, the norms are stringent. They should be party members and also be currently playing  an active role in Kudumbasree—a women empowerment programme run by the government at gram panchayat level. The party will bear the cost of the training to be imparted to those selected.

The scheme is already being implemented in the gram panchayats ruled by the CPM. Each panchayat spends a minimum of Rs 1 lakh on the scheme every year. Now, it is run with the help of local NGOs and the nodal officer is the doctor at the public health centre of the panchayat. Under the new system, the service is entrusted with the units controlled by the party. Since the units are NGOs, they can take donations from public with which they can provide better service to the poor patients.  

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