Raj Balaji was one of the thousands present at Baba Ramdev's fast against corruption at the Ramlila Ground, little knowing that she would soon be on a hospital bed with a broken spine. The 52-year-old was among the over 100 injured in the post-midnight police crackdown and most of the victims claimed they did not receive proper medical attention.
"It is not just Balaji but at least 100 people were injured, out of which 71 are critical. Many have suffered wounds on their limbs," a medical official at the LNJP Hospital's disaster ward told IANS.
The LNJP is the hospital closest to the Ramlila ground, from where police forcibly removed Ramdev after midnight Saturday and dispersed his supporters using batons and tear gas.
"Balaji was the first among the few to be admitted. Her spinal cord is broken and she was in intensive care unit (ICU) in a critical condition. After some time she was taken to a nearby hospital as there were many other patients to be treated," a senior doctor told IANS.
According to a eye-witness, Balaji, crying with pain, was lying outside the hospital near the gate for 20 minutes before she was shifted to another hospital.
Another victim, Jay Krishna Roy from Tamil Nadu, said: "My right hand was swollen and it was paining but I had to wait for over four hours as the police officials were treated first, most of them had minor injuries."
The injured also alleged that the LNJP had discharged them without proper treatment.
When IANS contacted the hospital authorities, a hospital official said: "As many thronged the hospital after midnight, it was difficult to manage them."
Param Hans Prakash of Madhya Pradesh alleged: "About 20 have been discharged but they were not given proper medical treatment. Fake reports were made on the command of Delhi Police."
Voicing the same complaint, Alok Solanki, who was with his injured sister near the hospital gate, said: "I came at 1 a.m. with my sister whose left leg was fractured and when I took my sister for the x-ray, they had took an x-ray of the right one instead of left leg. When I questioned the doctors they said everything is normal and asked us to leave."
Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader and Municipal Corporation of Delhi's (MCD) Leader of House Subhash Arya, who visited the injured, said: "It is hell out here, with patients growling for the pain and sufficient doctors to treat them are not there. About four patients are very critical. At least patients who are critically injured should be given immediate medical attention."
BJP Mahila Morcha leader Menakshi Lekhi said: "Being a witness of all the ill treatment meted out by these victims, I decided to file a petition tomorrow (Monday) and I will fight for justice for the victims of he stampede till they get proper medical treatment."
Delhi Police officials claimed that 39 supporters, including four women, were injured and 23 policemen were injured and they were discharged after first aid.
According to a Delhi police official, some of the injured were also admitted to the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) and the Ram Manohar Lohia (RML) Hospital but the number of patients admitted is not yet known.