Millennium Post

Gowda settles hospital bills of dead brother by cheque

Union Minister D V Sadananda Gowda was himself at the receiving end of demonetisation woes as a private hospital here refused to accept defunct high value currency when he tried to settle the bills for treatment of his brother who passed away.

Gowda tried to make part payment with demonetised Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 notes on Tuesday while clearing the bills for the treatment of his brother Bhaskar Gowda, who died of jaundice on Tuesday, sources at the hospital and officials said.

However, the hospital made it plain to the Minister that it cannot take the old notes, which led to an upset Gowda questioning them on their refusal.

Gowda pointed out to the hospital staff that government had permitted acceptance of demonetised currency by hospitals and asked them to give it in writing that they cannot accept it. But he was told that private hospitals were out of the ambit and it was applicable only to government-run hospitals which can accept the notes till November 24, the sources said.

Gowda, who is the Minister for Statistics and Programme Implementation, later settled the bill through cheque following which the body was later handed over to him.

The minister reportedly said that scrapped notes were not accepted in spite of government guidelines and wondered, “In such a situation, what would be the condition of a common man.” 

“I will take up this issue (non-acceptance by private hospitals) with the government,” Gowda reportedly remarked.

Gowda’s younger brother Bhaskar, aged 56, was practising Law before switching over to farming.

Officials said that private hospitals here had stated in writing at an official meeting here recently that the order to accept demonetised currency was applicable only to government hospitals and not for them, due to which they cannot accept scrapped notes. 
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