Dr Sujit Chatterjee, Chief Executive Officer of the LH Hiranandani Hospital in Powai, and four other doctors earlier arrested by the Powai police in connection with the illegal kidney donation racket, were Saturday remanded in judicial custody until August 26 by a magistrate’s court.
The doctors will now have to spend at least the next two days behind the bars with their bail application scheduled to be heard on August 16. The court granted judicial custody after the police said their investigation was “complete with respect to the doctors” and that their police custody was no longer needed.
On August 9, the five doctors were arrested after a report by a three-man government panel indicted them. The court had earlier remanded them in three days’ police custody as the police wanted to probe allegations that the doctors had deliberately been negligent in lieu of some financial gain. The police also wanted to interrogate the doctors to probe whether they had a direct link in the racket. The police custody concluded Saturday.
Meanwhile, senior advocate Abad Ponda requested the court for bail to the arrested doctors. He even made a special case for accused doctor Prakash Shetty. “My client’s wife has delivered twins this morning. She is in a critical condition. I plead for some mercy. I request that they (all doctors) don’t be sent to that dungeon and their bail pleas be heard,” he said. The defence even submitted the hospital admission certificates of Shetty’s wife to the court. The court has now scheduled a bail hearing for August 16.
The police, meanwhile, said there were doctors from other hospitals too who were still under their scanner. “As per sections of the Transplantation of Human Organs Act, 1994, the Directorate of Health Services (DHS) is the competent authority in such cases. We do not want the defence to use this technical point against us at a later stage. Hence, we are awaiting their report based on which further arrests, if any, will take place in the case,” said an officer privy to the investigation. The officer added that they had also sent three more cases to the DHS suspecting that procedures for kidney transplant were not followed.