Now, U-16 goalie gets torn lip, no medical aid

A day after MiD DAY published an article (‘Heaven help your footballer kid,’ July 18) highlighting the apathy of the District Sports Office (DSO) when it comes to providing medical aid in its ongoing school football tournaments, the absence of basic medical facilities continued to haunt aspiring young footballers.

Paying the price: Goalkeeper Akash Chaurasia sustained a gash to his upper lip after colliding with an opposition player in an U-16 football match held at Azad Maidan yesterday

Yesterday, during an U-16 football match being played at Azad Maidan, 15-year-old goalie Akash Chaurasia, who was manning the goalpost for his school -- St Sebastian Goan High School (Dabul), Charni Road, -- sustained a grievous cut to his lip and collapsed after a player from St Peter’s High School’s, Mazgaon, accidentally rammed into him during the match. His upper lip was torn off in the collision.

Click to view: No medical aid at city grounds: Heaven help your footballer kid
MiD DAY's report on Thursday

“Though he was able to stand up a while later and continued to stand under the bar, he was bleeding profusely. Thankfully, there were two peons seated at the ground with a first aid kit. They put cotton on his wounded lip to stop the bleeding, after which we rushed him to G T Hospital in a taxi. There was nobody present to treat him at the ground. How can the DSO authorities expect a maali to provide first aid to a player?” said St Sebastian football coach George D’Souza.

Doctors sutured the upper lip to close the gaping wound. An on-duty doctor, who was present at the hospital’s emergency ward, said, “He [Akash] did not have to be admitted, as his lip was stitched up in around 15 minutes. The swelling will subside in a few days.”

Family shocked
When the young lad’s parents got to know of the incident, they rushed to the hospital.

Speaking to MiD DAY, Akash’s father, Dilip, who owns a paan shop in Bhuleshwar, said, “My son has been playing football for the last few years and the only reason we let him play while he is in Std X is because we were informed that he would get 25 marks more under the sports quota.”

“However, after this incident, we have decided to stop him from playing football so that he concentrates on his studies,” added the father.

Hospital staff threaten Taif’s family
The article published by MiD DAY on 13-year-old Taif Ansari’s fractured leg did not go down well with the G T hospital authorities. The hospital staff allegedly threatened the footballer’s family, stating that they would not treat him any further because the family had violated the hospital’s rules by clicking pictures within the premises and sending it to the press.

“We spoke about Taif’s injury not because we wanted any media coverage. But it was a genuine concern for our kid and little did we know that it would backfire on us. Early last morning, the hospital authorities told us that because we leaked the news they wanted us to take our kid and shift him to another hospital,” said a family member, who did not wished to be named. Taif had cracked the shinbone of his left leg while playing against Diamond Jubilee High School in an U-14 tie on Wednesday.

The other side
“The family was in no way threatened by the hospital staff. It is our duty to treat the patient and I will see to it that he receives proper treatment, as the surgery is scheduled for Saturday,” said Dr D R Kulkarani, medical superintendent, G T Hospital. 

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