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‘Molested’ in isolation, patient dies after hurried discharge

Police arrested the accused ward boy on Sunday, 6 days after the death of the patient, who had respiratory and obstetrical problems
She was the only patient in the isolation ward. She was discharged on April 2 after she had communicated the allegation of molestation to her family and they had raised a hue and cry.

Dev Raj   |   Patna   |   Published 12.04.20, 09:54 PM

A suspected Covid-19 patient who alleged molestation in the isolation ward of a government hospital in Gaya died of “excessive bleeding” at home after she was hurriedly discharged following her accusation.

Police arrested the accused ward boy on Sunday, six days after the death of the patient, who had respiratory and obstetrical problems.

Her family said the Anugrah Narayan Magadh Medical College and Hospital, considered the most prestigious in southern Bihar, had not conducted any probe when she alleged molestation but discharged her.

They said they did not know whether any sample was taken from her for a coronavirus test, or what the results were if a test was done, or whether the results had arrived when the hospital discharged her.

Ironically, the arrested suspect has been kept in isolation because he had come in contact with the woman patient and a sample has been taken from him for a test, the police have confirmed.

Calls by The Telegraph to the mobile number of hospital superintendent Bijay Krishna Prasad remained unanswered. However, sources said Prasad had formed a team to probe the matter after an FIR was lodged two days after the woman’s death.

The 22-year-old woman had returned with her husband from Ludhiana in Punjab to her village in Gaya district on March 25.

She had suffered a miscarriage sometime ago and became unwell after reaching home. She also developed respiratory problems.

Her family admitted her to the hospital on March 27. She was kept in the emergency ward for two days before being shifted to the coronavirus ward for 14 days’ isolation.

She was the only patient in the isolation ward. She was discharged on April 2 after she had communicated the allegation of molestation to her family and they had raised a hue and cry.

She died on April 6, and her mother-in-law registered an FIR at the medical college police station on April 8.

“My daughter-in-law confided to me and my son that she was molested inside the coronavirus ward for two days by a man who sported a tika (religious mark) on his forehead,” her mother-in-law told reporters.

“We took this up with the people working at the hospital, after which she was hurriedly discharged despite being very weak. She died of excessive bleeding at home.”

Gaya senior superintendent of police Rajeev Mishra told this newspaper: “There was only one accused and he has been arrested. We will reveal his name and other details after his (coronavirus) test report comes.”

Officers said they were trying to obtain CCTV footage from the hospital. The footage gets deleted in seven days, so cyber forensic teams have been assigned to recover them.

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