Kendrapara, Aug. 12: A controversy has sparked off after authorities of the district headquarters hospital here allegedly set on fire life-saving drugs worth lakhs.
The burnt medicines were supposed to be distributed for free to both indoor and outdoor patients of the hospital.
The district administration has ordered a probe into the incident.
Kendrapara collector Durga Prasad Behera said: “The administration came to know of it through a complaint lodged by a person. The chief district medical officer has been asked to investigate the matter and submit a fact-finding report, on the basis of which disciplinary proceedings will be initiated against the hospital authorities.”
Local residents spotted the burnt remains of the medicines, which were yet to reach their expiry dates.
However, hospital authorities insisted that no medicines were burnt during their recent routine clean-up exercise of the medicine storehouse. Chief district medical officer Shantilata Sharma said: “The storehouse is cleaned at periodical intervals to accommodate fresh stocks. Accordingly, the store was made dirt-free and empty packets were set on fire. I do not have knowledge of any medicines being burnt.”
However, local residents, who spotted the burnt stocks, had a different version.
“We were shocked to find the burnt medicines stocks. These medicines could have come to the use of ailing patients. On most of the packets, we spotted 2014 as the year of expiry. It is an act of criminal negligence on part of the authorities concerned. The guilty persons should be punished,” said Mohammad Illiyas, a local resident.
The medicines were mostly procured from central store of the state health directorate in Bhubaneswar.
Some of those were locally purchased for the purpose of emergency treatment from the Rogi Kalyan Samity, said an official.