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Pregnant woman’s death: Odisha women’s panel inquiry moving at snail’s pace

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Odisha Sun Times Bureau

With inputs from  Soubhagya Behera

Bhubaneswar, July 10:

The progress in the inquiry conducted by the Odisha State Commission for Women (OSCW) into the death of a pregnant woman at the Capital Hospital on June 29 due to alleged negligence of hospital authorities seems to be moving at snail’s pace.

On Wednesday,the IIC Nayapalli police station, president of Kinnar Sangh and the doctor on duty on June 29 at Capital Hospital when the death occurred and the in-charge of Capital Hospital Police Outpost deposed before the Commission in the second phase, sources said.

“Summons will be soon issued to authorities of the SCB Medical College and Hospital, Cuttack in the matter. Action will be taken against those found guilty after the probe is completed”, said Lopamudra Buxipatra, chairperson OSCW.

With the Commission limiting itself to recording of statements and the Health department keeping silent on the matter after seeking a report, there are doubts whether the offenders would be ever brought to book.

“The unfortunate woman and her unborn child lost their lives because of apathy and negligence of the hospital authorities and police administration. We will move the Human Rights Commission in the matter and demand stringent action against the guilty”, said Menaka Kinnar, president, Kinnar Sangh.

Earlier on July 3, two doctors and the in-charge of the 108 ambulance services in Capital Hospital had deposed before the Commission in the case.

It may be recalled here that a destitute pregnant woman from Astaranga area in Puri district was admitted to the Capital Hospital on June 28.

On finding her condition to be critical, the doctors on duty sent her to SCB Medical College and Hospital, Cuttack for advanced treatment through a 108 ambulance.

But surprisingly, the woman was found groaning in pain by some eunuchs near the Durga Puja Mandap in Nayapalli here on June 29.

The latter informed the Ruchika Helpline which rescued the hapless woman and admitted her again to Capital Hospital at about 5 pm.

Ruchika Helpline has alleged that the woman was left unattended at the hospital for nearly six hours and died at about 11 pm with her unborn child dying in her womb much before her death.

The death of the woman and her unborn child caused due to alleged negligence of hospital authorities and the broadcast of the report on Kanak TV forced the OSCW to conduct a probe.

Sources said Capital Hospital authorities are trying their level best to hush up the incident as the doctor on duty between 9 pm and 11 pm on the fateful day enjoys political clout.