A Delhi Police sub-inspector has been suspended and the SHO of Gulabi Bagh police station transferred to Police Lines over “inaction” and “delay in filing an FIR” in the stabbing of a 26-year-old student of Delhi University’s School of Open Learning on July 1. Lakhan Singh was allegedly robbed of his wallet and phone, and stabbed thrice in the abdomen by two men and a juvenile, near North Delhi’s Pratap Nagar Metro station around 11 pm. He succumbed to his injuries on July 9 at RML hospital.
Singh’s family has alleged apathy by police as well as “negligence” by Aruna Asaf Ali hospital in Civil Lines, where he was first rushed with stab wounds and discharged hours later. Sumant Sinha, medical superintendent of Aruna Asaf Ali hospital, claimed: “A senior resident doctor observed and treated the patient for hours until he was fine enough to go home. He wanted to go home so we let him. We told the family to come back the next day for proper dressing and consultation with a specialist, but they did not.”
Sinha said the family returned after six days. He said, “The patient, we were told, went to a clinic near his house. He got an infection due to improper dressing; this affected kidney function. We conducted a blood test and confirmed the infection. Since we don’t perform kidney dialysis, which he needed, we referred him to RML.”
Asked why they took Singh to a clinic, his father Puran Singh, a shopkeeper, claimed: “Doctors at the hospital told us we can take him to any clinic or hospital nearby for dressing and that’s what we did… When we returned to the hospital days later, doctors told us we shouldn’t have taken him to a clinic, and that one of his kidneys was infected.” He died at RML the next day.
Puran further alleged: “Police did not take any action; no FIR was filed till my son was declared dead by the hospital on Thursday. The night he was stabbed, a policeman noted down our complaint at the hospital, and after that we did not receive any calls. They didn’t care. After two-three days, we also visited Gulabi Bagh police station but no FIR was filed. The reason they gave us was that my son had been discharged.”
DCP (North) Monika Bhardwaj told The Indian Express, “There was a delay in registering the FIR. We have already suspended the SI, and sent SHO Gulabi Bagh police station to Police Lines. On Thursday, we registered an FIR. Two men have been arrested, and a juvenile apprehended.”
The DD entry in the case, accessed by The Indian Express, was made at 12.20 am on July 1. It mentions the name of duty constable Rakesh, and that the victim was brought to the hospital by a “public person”. The MLC prepared by the hospital states that Singh received “three stab wounds, simple injury… wounds cleaned, stitched, and observed. No vital organ affected. Temperature, pulse checked. Vital signs observed till early hours (of) July 2. Discharged.”
When he was stabbed, Singh was returning after collecting his salary from a shop where he worked. His father said: “He had not received his salary during the lockdown. He said he would be late. We were sleeping when we got a call from the hospital. I heard they have arrested the accused. What’s the point now?”
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