KEM hospital fire was accident: BMCUpdated: Nov 16, 2019 00:07 IST
The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) on Friday ruled out any lapse or negligence on part of the staff in King Edward Memorial (KEM) Hospital, citing the fire on November 7 to be an accident. The BMC said the staff’s timely actions saved the life of two-month-old Prince Rajbhar, who suffered 22% burns in the incident.
Additional municipal commissioner Ashwini Joshi said, “The inquiry report is out and it has revealed that the mishap was an accident, considering other ECG machines are working fine. Also, the staff acted timely by using a blanket and using the fire extinguisher. Hence, there was no negligence.”
Two-month-old Prince suffered serious burns on his left side and on November 11, his lower arm had to be amputated. He has also suffered burns on his face. Following a complaint filed by Prince’s father Pannalal Rajbhar on Wednesday, Bhoiwada Police registered a case under section 338 (causing grievous hurt by act endangering life or personal safety of others) of the Indian Penal Code.
Joshi told HT that the BMC’s inquiry report would be circulated to all concerned and added, “On the police investigations, we will cooperate with whatever investigation the police undertakes.”
The BMC also said there is no policy for compensation at present, but the civic body is planning to introduce a scheme by which patients will be covered under a group insurance scheme. “We will work on a scheme wherein all civic-run hospitals will charge a nominal fee to the patients while admitting them, and by this, all patients will be covered under the group insurance scheme, if there is some incident or accident,” said Joshi.
Corporators from all parties raised the issued in the BMC house on Friday. Ravi Raja, leader of Opposition and Congress corporator, said, “We spent lakhs and crores on appointing consultants, and here it is a very serious matter. Hence, we should give compensation to the family rather than saying that it was an accident and that there is no policy for the same.”
Former Mayor and Shiv Sena Corporator Vishakha Raut, said, “How can BMC claim it to be an accident? If the staff had acted on time, the infant would not have suffered from 22% per cent burns.”
Bharatiya Janata Party corporator Abhijit Samant said, “If the administration is not giving compensation, all corporators should give their one month salary to the family of the infant. Responsibility of every patient is BMC’s duty and the BMC cannot ignore it.”
However, Mumbai Mayor and Shiv Sena corporator Vishwanath Mahadeshwar, said, “The compensation amount cannot be given to the family of infant considering there is no such policy at the moment. But the BMC has to draft a policy on giving compensation for such incidents. We will have a discussion on drafting a policy in the next week. This to ensure that we do not find a solution for only this mishap, but also for future instances.”