In the third arrest since last month’s Gorakhpur hospital tragedy, the Uttar Pradesh Police on Saturday nabbed Dr Kafeel Ahmed Khan, who was earlier hailed as a hero for saving a number of lives by arranging oxygen.
Dr Khan, who was Head of the Encephalitis Ward at the BRD Medical College and Hospital in Gorakhpur, has been charged with medical negligence. He has also been accused of doing private practice.
On Friday, a court had issued non-bailable warrants against seven people, including Dr Khan, in connection with the death of children at the BRD Medical College hospital.
All of them were named in an FIR lodged by the government after a report by the Principal Secretary, in the wake of 63 children dying at the hospital within a span of five days.
An FIR was registered against 9 people at the Hazratganj police station in Lucknow over the death of the children in BRD Hospital. The first FIR was registered against corruption, second negligence and the third for private practice.
In the FIR, cases under various sections were registered against Dr Rajiv Mishra, Dr Kafeel Khan, Dr Satish, Dr Purnima Shukla, Chief Pharmacist Gajanan Jaiswal, Accountant Sudhir Pandey, Assistant Clerk, Uday Pratap Sharma of Pushpa Sales and Manish Bhandari.
The FIR was registered after a written complaint by DG Health, KK Gupta, under IPC sections 409, 308, 120B, 420, Prevention of Corruption Act, Section 8 of the IPC, Section 15 of the Indian Medical Council Act, 1956.
The Gorakhpur hospital deaths started on August 10, when over 63 children died at the state-run Baba Raghav Das Medical College in Gorakhpur, Uttar Pradesh. While many accredited this to the oxygen supplier cutting off the hospital for non-payment from the state government but the supplier denied the cut-off. The official report by Chief Secretary also denied lack of oxygen as the cause of death.
While the Uttar Pradesh government vehemently denied that shortage of oxygen led to the deaths, a high-powered probe committee headed by Chief Secretary Rajive Kumar indicted Mishra and others of laxity and other charges.
Mishra was accused of sitting over the issue of payments to the vendor supplying oxygen gas to the hospital.
The doctor couple were booked on the basis of the report submitted to Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath by the chief secretary.
Adityanath had formed the committee on August 12, a day after the deaths of children were reported at the hospital.