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PGI doctor slaps HIV patient repeatedly over ‘misunderstanding’

The patient said the doctor slapped him on his face at least five times.

punjab Updated: Apr 24, 2018 15:20 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Chandigarh
PGI woman doctor,doctor slaps patient,doc slaps HIV patient
“I was left shocked and came outside and sat quietly. She again came, slapped me several times and grabbed my card from my hand and left,” he said.(HT File )

A high drama was witnessed at the new out-patient department of Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research on Monday morning when a woman doctor slapped an HIV-infected patient repeatedly over what the authorities later claimed was a misunderstanding.

The patient, a 45-year-old labourer from Ambala, was visiting the PGIMER along with his wife and two children, who too are HIV-infected and are undergoing treatment here.

The incident took place around 10:15am when he went to the anti-retroviral therapy (ART) centre with his visually impaired wife and 12-year-old son to get medicine.

“Another man was standing in front of me, to whom Dr Pooja (of the ART centre) told angrily to sit down. I too told the man to sit. I was scratching my head when saying so. The doctor thought I am making a gesture to mean she is mad,” said the patient.

“There was a misunderstanding. It was sorted out and no official complaint has been received.” —Manju Wadwalkar, PGIMER public relations officer

The patient said the doctor slapped him on his face at least five times.

“I was left shocked and came outside and sat quietly. She again came, slapped me several times and grabbed my card from my hand and left,” he said.

A woman patient, who did not want to be named, said: “I was sitting in the waiting area when I saw the doctor slapping the poor man several times. He was so badly treated that his wife and child started crying.”

Meanwhile, a bystander called police, but the doctor and patient reached a compromise.

“I did not register a complaint as I am a poor man and have a blind wife and two sick children to look after. Why would I call a doctor mad?” said the man.

Even as Dr Pooja denied the allegations and claimed she was not even present at the centre, both the ART in-charge and the institute’s public relations department admitted to the incident.

Centre in-charge Dr Aman Sharma said: “It all began when the doctor thought the man had made a wrong gesture. There was some misunderstanding. No formal complaint has been lodged.”

Manju Wadwalkar, PGIMER public relations officer, said: “There was a misunderstanding. It was sorted out and no official complaint has been received.”

Even as the victim claimed Dr Pooja is rude to patients, Dr Sharma said she is an “exceptionally good doctor”. “I do not know what exactly happened. But we have told our staff to call security and never take law in their hands,” he said.

First Published: Apr 24, 2018 09:50 IST