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HindustanTimes Sun,31 Aug 2014

‘Probe medical lapses that killed former CJI’

Nagendar Sharma, Hindustan Times  New Delhi, September 17, 2013
First Published: 01:44 IST(17/9/2013) | Last Updated: 03:21 IST(17/9/2013)

The alleged medical lapses responsible for the death of justice JS Verma in April must be investigated, 34 eminent citizens led by former Chief Justice of India (CJI) MN Venkatachaliah, have demanded in a letter to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.

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The letter signed by former Supreme Court judge Kuldip Singh, and noted lawyers Soli Sorabjee, Anil B Divan, Shanti Bhushan and Gopal Subramanium among others, highlights the demand for setting-up of a professional standards and regulatory body for ensuring ethical standards and accountability in the healthcare system.

“Justice Verma had led a very disciplined and a healthy lifestyle, and to our knowledge he had never complained of any serious ill health… He successfully completed in record time the enormous task of heading the committee on making criminal laws more effective after the December 16 gang rape,” states the letter.

The signatories, who include Infosys founder NR Narayana Murthy, former chairman and CEO of Ernst & Young India KN Memani, former NASSCOM chief Kiran karnik and social activists Aruna Roy and Nikhil De, have requested the PM to seriously consider the issues raised by justice Verma’s wife.

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“We have seen the letter addressed to you by Pushpa Verma, wife of former CJI Verma, in which she has conveyed her deep anguish… We strongly feel that necessary steps be taken to investigate the serious medical lapses that resulted in this tragic loss to the nation,” states the letter.

In a separate four-page letter to the Prime Minister written on July 6, justice Verma’s wife wrote that an independent opinion on his medical reports from a panel of experts from the All India Institute of Medical Sciences should be obtained.

“The copies of all papers and documents regarding his treatment are available with us, if required. Something good will emerge from the injustice faced by us if such a thing can be avoided,” Pushpa Verma stated  in her letter.


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