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Storekeeper of govt hospital arrested for demanding bribe

Kolkata: A staffer of a state-run hospital in the city has been arrested for allegedly demanding bribe from a patient's family for completing the paperwork required for providing a free stent for a life saving operation, police said today.

The family's ordeal continued for three months after 23-year-old Amit Mandal was admitted to the hospital on January 25 as the requisite procedure for getting a free stent dragged on for over 90 days. The patient, who was suffering from brain aneurysm, a bulging blood vessel in the brain, died on April 27.

Palash Dutta, the storekeeper at the Bangur Institute of Neurosciences (BIN), had allegedly demanded a bribe of Rs 3 lakh from Mandals family for completing the paperwork required for getting a sanction for the stent, costing Rs 7 lakh. A stent is given free to patients being treated in government hospitals in the state. But if the device costs more than Rs 4 lakh, the file has to be forwarded to the 'Swastha Bhavan' for its clearance.

The accused was arrested late Saturday night after Mandals father had lodged a complaint with the hospital and the police on April 27, a senior officer of Kolkata Police said.

As per the fathers complaint, Dutta had not forwarded the papers to the Swastha Bhavan. The father also said in his complaint that Dutta had abused and assaulted the patients mother when she had visited his chamber at the BIN.


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