Doctors allege Valmiki Hospital officials watered down assault case
Doctors' associations are blaming the administration of Delhi government's Maharishi Valmiki Hospital for watering down an alleged case of assault of one of its doctors.
A doctor claimed that the accused is a friend of one of the hospital officials. Besides, the doctors' associations are furious that the FIR in the case was lodged in the name of an individual rather than the institution, which goes against the directions of the Delhi and central governments.
"There are clear orders that in case of any assault on doctor or health care workers (HCWs), the FIR has to be institutional. But the hospital administration had the FIR lodged in the name of the concerned doctor. I firmly believe that someone from the administration is trying to save the culprit as it was found that one of the officials is close friends with the culprit," said Pankaj Solanki, former president of the Federation of Resident Doctors Association (FORDA), a pan-India body of resident doctors' associations.
"The administration should explain why they didn't go for the institutional FIR despite the orders from the state and the Centre," he said. An order dated April 16, 2019, notified by the health department of the Delhi government states that in cases of violence by patients and their attendants against the HCWs, the FIRs should be lodged by the hospital or the institution immediately.
"In no case, the individual doctor/paramedical/nursing/administrative staff, etc should be asked to lodge the FIR with the police in such cases," the order underlined.
On Saturday, Dr Rahul Jain was physically assaulted by a patient named Priyanka and her attendant Naresh while performing minor OT procedures. The assault allegedly took place when Dr Jain asked the patient and her aide to come by turn in OT, and as they did not wear masks, they were requested to wear the same. He has also claimed that both the accused beat him and even hurled a stool at his head, which Dr Jain luckily escaped.
Later, Dr Jain lodged an FIR against Priyanka and Naresh at Bawana police station under his name. The FIR is lodged under sections 186/188/353/332/506/34 of IPC and DMSP and MSI Act.
An official of the hospital said that it could be a possibility that the patient is an acquaintance with the senior administrative staff. However, he did not reveal the name of that official.
IANS tried to contact the hospital's medical superintendent but he did not respond to calls and messages. However, Dr Ajay Sharma, casualty in-charge of the hospital did speak to this correspondent, but cut the call abruptly when a counter question was posed. "Come to the office tomorrow, I don't have time to explain things on the phone," he said before ending the call.
The FORDA and Resident Doctors' Association of the hospital have demanded that the institutional FIR must be lodged against the accused. "The scope of action by police in institutional FIR is more effective than in individual FIR. Despite the FIR, the accused are roaming scot-free," a member of FORDA said.