Updated: May 2, 2021 10:35:09 pm
In the wake of rising complaints of deaths at civic hospitals like the Jumbo Covid Hospital and the Auto Cluster, District Guardian Minister Ajit Pawar on Saturday visited the headquarters of the Pimpri-Chinchwad Municipal Corporation (PCMC) and held a meeting with civic officials. He directed the PCMC administration to strictly monitor Covid hospitals and take steps to reduce mortality.
Mayor Usha Dhore, who was present when Ajit Pawar visited the headquarters, said, “When I pointed out the rising number of deaths of Covid-19 patients, especially at PCMC-run facilities like the Jumbo hospital and Auto Cluster, the Guardian Minister took serious note of it…He immediatley asked the PCMC commissioner to look into it and take steps to reduce mortality rate.” She added, “The commissioner promised that he will take the necessary steps…”
Pawar also visited the War Room and held a meeting with the PCMC administration in the standing committe hall.
Dhore told The Indian Express on Saturday, “Every day, at least 80 to 90 deaths of Covid-19 patients take place in Pimpri-Chinchwad. Most of these deaths are reported from PCMC facilities. Sometimes, they are more than 90 deaths in a day. This was not the situation in the first wave when there were fewer than deaths every day. Why is this happening? Why are so many deaths taking place in one day? I am concerned, corporators are worried and residents are scared…Something is going wrong somewhere, the PCMC administration cannot leave everything to the contractors who are running our Covid facilities. We need to monitor them on a regular basis and question them about so many deaths every day.”
Dhore said the PCMC administration led by Municipal Commissioner Rajesh Patil has been found wanting in controlling the situation and that corporators are angry with the civic administration. “At yesterday’s civic general body meeting, it was the ruling party corporators who were vociferous in their attack against civic hospitals and the civic administration…The civic administration should put in its best efforts to tackle the situation,” she said.
Meanwhile, at Friday’s civic general body meeting, corporators across party lines demanded that the contract given to private parties to run the Jumbo and Auto Cluster facilities should be withdrawn.
Shiv Sena corporator Rahul Kalate said, “A principal of a PCMC school was asked to pay Rs 1 lakh for a ventilator bed, that too in PCMC hospital where treatment was free. This is shocking…We should not spare the wrongdoers…police complaints should be filed against the wrongdoers and their contracts scrapped.”
BJP corporator Seema Savale said, “It is shocking to note that some doctors are making a business out of ventilator beds…We need to find out who are these private parties running Covid hospitals…I suspect these parties are propped up by some corporators. Only a thorough probe will reveal the truth…we should cancel the membership of such corporators.”
Another corporator, Sachin Bhosale, said, “I suspect there is a bigger racket flourishing in these facilities. PCMC should probe the matter thoroughly. If allegations are being made against doctors for taking money for admitting patients, then there is something seriously wrong with these hospitals.”
BJP corporator Sandeep Waghere said, “It is shameful that a teacher was asked to pay Rs 1 lakh for a ventilator bed. I suggest that the PCMC should file an FIR of extortion against the concerned doctors.”
BJP corporator Eknath Pawar said, “If something wrong is happening at the Jumbo and Auto Cluster facilities, the PCMC administration should conduct a probe and take action against the guilty parties. The PCMC should itself monitor and run the facilities…”
Another corporator, Sujata Palande, said, “As per my information, not a single patient has recovered at these two facilities. All of them have died…PCMC administration should file police complaints against the contractors who run these hospitals otherwise we will be forced to file a culpable homicide case against the PCMC chief.”
After the corporators spoke, the mayor directed the PCMC administration to file a police complaint against the doctors who took money in lieu of a ventilator bed at the Auto Cluster facility. “The Covid hospitals do not belong to private parties. They belong to the PCMC. Those who are involved in malpractice should be punished. I direct the PCMC administration to file a police complaint against those against whom allegations have been made,” she said.
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