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A Delhi court has convicted four persons for attacking doctors and damaging property of a government hospital after one of their relatives was declared dead by them. Perceiving that such incidents had caused doctors and other staff to proceed on strikes and have demanded secure work environment.
Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Pawan Singh Rajawat had sentenced Bablu, Imran, Nuru and Rashid to six months in jail for the offences under section 186 (obstructing public servant in discharge of public functions), 427 (damage to public property by mischief) and 34 (common intention) of the Indian Penal Code.
The court said in a recent order that the offenders who are causing obstruction to the public servants in discharging their duty of attending to the patients in casualty have caused danger to the life of the patients who require immediate attention of the doctors and other staff in the casualty. Also, the damaged to the defibrillator machine has not only caused to financial loss to the hospital but has also resulted into the denial of use of said machine for treatment of the patients. The defibrillator machine is a life saving device.
According to the prosecution, in July 2007, one patient was brought to the Lok Nayak Jai Prakash Narayan Hospital (LNJP) Hospital after being referred from Babu Jagjivan Ram Memorial Hospital (BJRM) hospital. He was declared dead by the doctors at the LNJP Hospital on arrival. Later, the relatives along with 20 other persons started quarreling with the two attending doctors, attacked them and damaged the defibrillator machine. The duty constable was immediately called with security staff and the situation was brought under control.
A case was then registered on the complaint of the chief medical officer of the hospital and during the trial, the accused claimed they have been falsely caught up and pleaded innocence. The court said that the act of the convicts does not deserve any compassion as it has been seen that many times the relatives of patients admitted to hospitals for treatment have attacked doctors and the property of hospital which has caused irreversible disruption in medical services.
It also added that in recent past, many times such incidents have caused doctors and other staff to proceed on strikes demanding better protected environment for "enabling them to discharge their primary function of providing best medical care to the patients admitted in the hospital".
The court said that by misbehaving with the staff and doctors, shouting and pushing the staff members and by damaging the property of the hospital including a defibrillator machine, the alleged have voluntarily obstructed the public servants from discharging their public duty as authorized by law.
It also said there are enough indications of voluntarily obstruction as force has been used against the doctors and staff on duty by the accused persons while doctors and other staff were discharging their public duty being employees of LNJP Hospital, a government hospital. The damage to the machine also points towards the objective of accused persons in preventing the doctors and other staff on duty in discharging their public duty.
A former employee of the hospital during the trial told the court that the defibrillator machine was purchased for over Rs 1.17 lakh.