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Us-and-them cry at SSKM

CPM Pandabeswar MLA Gouranga Chatterjee in SSKM on Tuesday.
Picture by Sayantan Ghosh

Calcutta, Dec. 11: Five MLAs — two from the Left and three from the Trinamul Congress — were taken to SSKM Hospital today for treatment after the House ruckus amid allegations of bias during admission.

The five were brought to the hospital in a span of an hour. One of them, Mahamuda Begum, the Trinamul MLA from Kumarganj in South Dinajpur, was admitted in the Woodburn ward. The four others were discharged.

“All five MLAs and others who had accompanied them were pressuring us for admission,” said a doctor at the emergency ward who treated the injured.

Deblina Hembram, the CPM MLA of Ranibandh who was seen brawling with Trinamul’s Mahamuda, said although she had similar complaints as Mahamuda, she was not admitted to the hospital.

Mahamuda had complained of “severe chest pain and respiratory distress”, so she was admitted, a doctor said.

The first to arrive at the SSKM emergency ward at 2.30pm was the CPM MLA from Burdwan’s Pandabeswar, Gouranga Chatterjee. “I was suffering from headache and dizziness but they didn’t admit me,” Chatterjee said. He was brought in a stretcher to the cardiovascular department, where he was examined and then taken away for a CT scan.

Immediately after he was taken out from the cardiovascular department, Mahamuda was wheeled in.

Around 3.10pm, Hembram came to the hospital. Her party colleagues in the House, MLAs Shajahan Chowdhury and Basudeb Khan, assisted her as she walked into the emergency ward.

“I have pain in the chest and abdomen. Please get me admitted as I can’t breathe,” she reportedly told doctors. The doctors sent her for an X-ray, after which she was taken to the cardiothorassic department.

For about half an hour, the CPM MLAs argued with the doctors to get Deblina admitted but the physicians said there was no need to do so.

“There were no fractures detected and no major injury, so she was discharged,” said Tamal Kanti Ghosh, the medical superintendent of SSKM.

The CPM MLAs later said they would not let go of the matter easily.

“Deblina will be brought again to the hospital for another round of check-up. She was severely beaten up,” said Shajahan, whose spectacles were broken in the Assembly. “They are playing aamra-ora (us and them) even in the case of treatment. Their MLA also didn’t have any major injury but was admitted,” he said.

Pulak Roy, Trinamul Congress MLA from Uluberia, was the last to get to the hospital around 3.30pm.

“He had suffered a deep cut in the leg and I asked him to get admitted. He was treated by the doctors and discharged,” said Sonali Guha, the deputy Speaker in the Assembly.

Samir Jana, another Trinamul MLA from Patharpratima also went to the SSKM emergency complaining of chest injury. He was discharged, too.

Around 4pm, Mahamuda was taken to the Woodburn ward. She was put in cabin 23. “She suffered a severe blow in the chest and is suffering from respiratory distress,” said a doctor. She will undergo more tests tomorrow.

SSKM authorities said there was no bias on their part. “We do not look at any party while treating patients. Mahamuda Begum was admitted because she has a medical condition,” said hospital superintendent Ghosh.