Independence Day restrictions hold up traffic, heart patient dies

  • Ananya Bhardwaj, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
  • Updated: Aug 14, 2016 23:33 IST
Prime Minister's convoy during full dress rehearsal for Independence day at Red Fort in Delhi on Saturday. (Arvind Yadav/ HT Photo)

A 50-year-old heart patient died on the way to hospital after police refused to let his auto-rickshaw through an independence day security drill on Saturday.

Kailash Chand, an east Delhi resident, suffered a cardiac arrest on Saturday morning. His son, Arvind, tried to rush him to a hospital but was stopped by the police near Geeta Colony Pul, a route that had been closed and its traffic diverted.

With time ticking away, Arvind pleaded with the security personnel to let him go but to no avail. Chand’s auto-rickshaw then took a circuitous route through Mori Gate and ITO, stopping at several intersections before finally reaching the hospital.

It took them one and a half hour to reach Lok Nayak hospital, which is otherwise only 10 minutes away. Chand died on the way.

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Arvind said the police told him that there was “a lot of VVIP movement” in the area as part of the independence day dress rehearsal and that they cannot allow them through.

Delhi police spokesman Rajan Bhagat confirmed the incident and even offered the family “our condolences”.

“It is a very unfortunate incident. It was a VVIP route and we had advertised the same in the papers.

“There was a restriction on vehicular movement near Laxmi Nagar Pul while the route from ISBT was open.”

Bhagat, however, said the patient’s family did not mention the medical emergency to the security men.

“Otherwise, we had kept that route open for ambulances and had even let one pass that day. It is a very sad incident,” he added.

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