Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Bhubaneswar, Oct 28:
The Bhubaneswar ADJ-2 court today granted conditional bail to SUM Hospital owner Manoj Nayak who was arrested in connection with the fire mishap at the hospital.
The bail was granted against a bail bond of Rs 1 lakh and two sureties. The court also granted bail to Medical Superintendent of SUM Hospital Puspa Raj Samantasinghar.
The court laid down conditions for Nayak to appear at police station when called for questioning and cooperate with the investigating officers in the investigation process.
Notably, the Khordha Additional District & Sessions Court-II had yesterday completed its hearing on the bail pleas of Nayak and Samantasinghar and reserved its verdict.
In a related development, the Enforcement Directorate (ED) began probe today after registering a case under Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) to examine the finances of the ‘Siksha O Anusandhan Charitable Trust’ that runs several institutions including the SUM Hospital.
The ED sought details of financial transactions of SUM hospital and SOA university from 2005 to 2016. It also sought the details of money collected from students of the varsity and patients admitted at the hospital.
The Special Investigation Team (SIT) on Black Money had directed the ED to look into the financial transactions of the hospital and the trust that runs it while asking the DGP, Odisha to cooperate with the latter in the matter.
It may be recalled here that while Nayak was arrested on October 20 after he surrendered at the Khandagiri police station, Samantasinghar was arrested along with three other staff of SUM Hospital on October 18.
Both have been charged under sections 304, 308, 285 and 34 of the Indian Penal Code.
Fire Services department and Directorate of Medical Education and Training (DMET) had registered two FIRs against SUM Hospital authorities in connection with the fire following which the arrests were made.
The Twin City Commissionerate police had taken Nayak on a two-day remand for interrogation in connection with the fire mishap.
Notably, 19 patients undergoing treatment at the SUM Hospital had died due to asphyxiation owing to the massive fire on October 17 which originated from the dialysis ward on the first floor and spread to the ICU on the same floor. In the incident, over 100 others sustained injuries and were shifted to various government and private hospitals.
Later, the death toll increased gradually to 29 till October 28 with more relocated patients succumbing at different hospitals.