The woman was allegedly denied treatment due to her religion. (Express photo by Prashant Nadkar)
The Telangana State Human Rights Commission (SHRC) Monday issued a notice to the government and sought an urgent report looking into a petition alleging denial of medical treatment to a person from a particular religion.
In its notice, the SHRC has sought the report from the Principal Secretary, Health, Medical, and Family Welfare department; the District Collector, Karimnagar; the District Medical and Health Officer(DMHO); and management of Olga Children Hospital, Karimnagar, at 10.30 am on May 4, 2020.The complainant, Shaik Rashid Ali from Karimnagar, has alleged that the patient was denied treatment by the hospital because of her religion. He shared with the commission the 55-seconds long audio clip and the tweet that has gone viral on social media.
In the audio, a woman is asking the person, purportedly an executive with the hospital, if the doctor is available for consultation and the reply is that the doctor does not see patients from a particular religion. The man on the other end of the call asks the caller to go to a pharmacist and get the necessary medicines and get treated.
.@KTRTRS Sir, Shocked to hear an audio from Karimnagar that muslims will not be treated in Olga Children's Hospital, Couldn't believe this happening in TS which has a record of #GangaJamuniTehzeeb,Pl ask @TelanganaDGP & @cpkarimnagar to do indepet investigate. @TelanganaCOPs pic.twitter.com/kVXEYU6XBL
— Amjed Ullah Khan MBT (@amjedmbt) April 13, 2020
When contacted, Karimnagar district collector K Shashanka said the district administration is not certain about the veracity of the audio clip and that police are looking into the matter. “The police are already looking into it. We will take all steps to fix them(hospital management) if there is any thing on the basis of religion if they have done,” he told.
A social activist and physiotherapist from Karimnagar district, Dr Syed Imam Showkath Ali said that he was informed about the audio clip by his friends from abroad who independently verified the audio by talking to the hospital staff on their number. “At this juncture where we all have to fight COVID-19 pandemic, such incidents set condemnable examples. Even if such behaviour was displayed by lower-rung employees, it is the duty of the doctors and management to make them aware of the situation. They should take disciplinary action against them as it could create unrest in the society,” he added.
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