MALDA, 9 APRIL: A female under-trial inmate of social welfare department’s home has fled from the district hospital where she got admitted two days back. Hospital authority and the social welfare department were involved in the blame game while social welfare minister expressed her concern over the incident.
22 year old Mariam Khatun came to district social welfare home back in December, 2011 She was involved in a case the trial of which is still on. However, she had epilepsy and was under regular medication. On 8th of this month she was admitted to Malda Medical College and hospital after her fit of convulsion. But this morning it was found that Mariam was not in her bed. She was not found anywhere in the hospital.
Sutapa Mukherjee, district social welfare officer, conceded that the girl was missing since this morning and said, “She was in the hospital and it is the responsibility of the hospital authority to look after her. We had nothing to do.”
However, hospital superintendent Dr H Ari reacted sharply to this allegation. “The patient was an inmate of social welfare department. It was their duty to post a guard for her in the hospital. It is not possible on our part to keep vigil individually on hundreds of patients. When the incident came to notice, we informed local police as well as to the sabhadipati of Malda Zilla Parishad and district administrations. What else could we do?”
Minister of social welfare department Sabitri Mitra on the other hand accused police for this escape. She said, “I know that social welfare department had requested police to provide security for this inmate. But police did not provide any citing the cause of lack of staff. Hospital too cannot pass the buck on others while the patient is primarily hospital’s concern. I’ll talk to the SP, Malda to know why security was not provided.”