10 fake doctors arrested in Vasai-Virar in a week; clinics sealed
Ten fake doctors, including an HSC dropout, were arrested in Vasai Virar, Mumbai for allegedly practising allopathic medicine without any medical qualifications or registration. The Vasai-Virar Municipal Corporation?s health department raided the clinics after a survey of suspicious clinics and identified ten such clinics. The clinics have now been sealed and residents are being urged to keep an eye out for doctors who don't display their degrees in their offices.
Mumbai: Dilipkumar Sheetal Prasad Sharma, 55, was practising allopathic medicines for the past seven years at the Sai Shraddha Polytechnique in Vasai East. Nothing unusual yet? He is an HSC dropout. Sharma was prescribing medicines to patients in Sativali, Vasai East and became quite well known in the area.
However, on Thursday, Sharma’s illegal occupation came to an abrupt end when the Vasai-Virar Municipal Corporation’s (VVMC) health department raided his clinic and demanded to see his medical degree and other educational certificates. On failing, Sharma was arrested.
Like Sharma, nine other doctors were arrested in the past week for allegedly practising allopathic medicines in Vasai Virar areas without any medical qualifications and registration, as required under the Maharashtra Medical Practitioners Act, 1961.
“When we saw the board of the clinic of Sharma, the name written on it was Bipin Upadhyay, BHMS (Bachelor of Homoeopathic Medicine and Surgery). We then went inside and the so-called doctor produced his identity card which revealed his name as Dilipkumar Sheetal Prasad Sharma,” Shrinivasrao Doodhmal, health officer at VVMC, said, adding that when Sharma was asked about his credentials, he said that he was a Class 12 science student and preparing to appear for BEMS (Bachelor of Electropathy Medicine and Surgery).
“When I heard this, I immediately ordered the accompanying police officers to arrest him,” he added. Sharma has been booked under section 420 of the Indian Penal Code for cheating and several relevant sections from the Maharashtra Medical Practitioners Act, 1961.
Residents of Samta Nagar in Sativali, Vasai East, said that they were not aware that Sharma was not a doctor. “He prescribed allopathic medicines which we would buy from a nearby pharmacy store and charged ₹120 as his fees for the check-up and prescription,” said Roushan Thapa, 24, an employee with an internet-providing firm and resident of Morya Naka in Vasai East.
Sharma had earlier worked as a compounder with Bipin Upadhyay and after him, Sharma had opened his own clinic and was running it using the Homeopathy doctor’s name, Kailash Barve, senior police inspector of Waliv Police Station, said.
Leaving out Sharma, out of the nine doctors, six have been identified as Jagdish Kumar from Richard Compound, Nalasopara, Sanjeev Kumar Jha from Bilalpada, Nalasopara, Ankhadpratap Yadav from Dhaniv, Nalasopara, Sajru Nisha Gaisaddin from Gokhiware, Vasai East, Santosh Jha from Highway Pada, Vasai East and Bhanu Shah from Virar East.
Dr Bhakti Chaudhary, Chief Medical Officer (CMO) of the VVMC was astonished to note that though so many bogus doctors practised in Vasai, the civic body did not receive any complaint from anyone. She said they started the drive a month back with a survey of suspicious clinics and identified ten such clinics.
“Every year we prepare a list of suspected clinics and doctors who do not have licences or proper degrees to practise medicine,” she said. “Generally, all the government doctors and health officers leave for the day around 5.30pm and these fake doctors enter their clinics only after 5pm to avoid getting caught by civic and government authorities.”
“This time, therefore, we waited after 5pm and raided 10 clinics which were on our list,” Choudhary said, adding that the clinics have been sealed and awareness will be created among residents to keep a watch on doctors who do not display their degrees in their offices.