Over a week after the body of a 27-year-old murder victim, who later found positive for Covid-19, went missing from Rajawadi Hospital, Ghatkopar, it was found at the hospital’s morgue Monday, police said.
The man was allegedly stabbed by his cousins on June 3 in Deonar and was declared dead when brought to Rajawadi hospital. A Covid-19 test before cremation had later found him positive for the virus. After a delay in arranging an ambulance, the family on June 7 approached the hospital to collect the body but were informed that it could not be located.
“The past two weeks have been horrible. First, my brother was murdered. Then he was found positive for Covid-19 at Rajawadi hospital and so we were told to take precautions for his burial,” the elder brother of the 27-year-old man, a zari worker, told The Indian Express.
“It took us two to three days to find an ambulance driver willing to drive the body of a Covid-19 patient. Finally, when we found one and went to the hospital on June 7 to claim the body, it turned out that the hospital had lost his body. How can a body go missing from a morgue?” he asked.
Soon afterwards, their mother had to be admitted to the hospital after she fell ill. “She had stopped eating and finally had to be shifted to a hospital. Meanwhile, police recorded our statement and registered an FIR against the hospital. The doctors at the hospital, police and we looked for my brother’s body in the morgue, but could not find it,” he said.
According to his brother, even when they had been searching for the body at the hospital’s morgue, there was one body that had not been kept in the freezer and was highly decomposed.
“We looked at it but could not identify it then,” he said. On Monday, police informed that it was the same body that has been identified to belong to his brother.
“The middle toe on my brother’s feet, like my mother and my own, was bigger than the big toe. Also, he had an accident due to which a chip had to be inserted in his leg two years ago. An x-ray confirmed that the body had a chip in the leg. The middle toe was also much long,” the brother said.
The hospital Monday sent sample for a DNA test. Its result is expected to take more than a week.
“As 90 per cent of the body had decomposed, we decided to go ahead with the funeral on Tuesday,” the brother, also a zari worker, said.
While calls and messages to Rajawadi Hospital dean, Vidya Thakur, went unanswered, Senior Inspector Sushil Kamble of Tilak Nagar police station said there was “negligence” on the part of the hospital staff and they were in the process of identifying persons to be charged in the FIR registered on June 10 in the case.
Earlier, the BMC said it has started an enquiry in the incident.
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