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Take sexual assault survivors to nearest hospital, urges top cop

The police no longer require to bring sexual assault survivors and accused to the Nagpada Police Hospital for collection of medical evidence, as the same service is available at 11 different city hospitals run by the state.

However, irrespective of the same being intimated to all 93 police stations, survivors are still being brought to the Nagpada Police Hospital, in spite of the options available close by. The instructions were even published in a police bulletin dated August 27, 2013, instructing the same along with the names of hospitals, but this is not being followed diligently by the police stations.

The medical experts at Nagpada Police Hospital want this to be adhered to as they get overburdened with more than six to seven cases of sexual assault on a daily basis. A doctor told SUNDAY MiD DAY, “We have only five doctors, who are expected to handle indoor hospital patients, other than 150 to 200 cases (policemen and their families) on OPD basis every day from morning till afternoon.

Then one of the five doctors has to stay in the hospital for 24 hours on rotation basis to handle sexual assault cases. On an average, each case takes approximately two hours for examination, collection of evidence and submission of papers. It becomes humanly impossible to render quality service, when more than five cases land up at the same time.”

The medical experts at the hospital even cited the recent example of the ragpicker who was gangraped in Mulund and had external injuries. The police officer at Mulund Police Station, inspite of being informed by a doctor at Police Hospital to take the victim to Rajawadi Hospital in Ghatkopar, took the accused and the rape survivor to the police hospital at Nagpada. “Visiting the nearest hospital will not only help collect crucial evidence but also save a lot of time. Also, the rape survivor could be provided with psychological, gynaecological and psychiatry counseling under one roof, the way it happened in the Shakti Mill case,” the doctor pointed out.

Two days ago, the medical officers had a meeting with the Joint Commissioner of Police (Admn) Hemant Nagrale and had a detailed discussion on the issue along with Police Surgeon SM Patil. One of the suggestions made to streamline and ensure that local police stations strictly follow the norms is to divide the shortlisted hospitals for respective police stations, just the way postmortem centres are divided in the city. Police Surgeon SM Patil said, “I have brought the matter to the notice of my superiors and they have incorporated the names of hospitals in the police notification. It is now upto the police stations to follow  the order.”

When asked about the Mulund case, Patil said, “If any police station gets the survivor and accused to the Police Hospital, I cannot refuse treatment and examinations. This would be violation of the Supreme Court order.” Joint Commissioner of Police (Admn) Hemant Nagrale said, “The investigating police officer and senior inspector of the police station should follow the instructions and should take sexual assault survivors to the nearest hospital.”

List of Hospitals where the victims can be taken
KB Bhabha Hospital, Bandra (W)
KB Bhabha Hospital, Kurla (W)
Rajawadi Hospital, Ghatkopar (E)
Bhagwati Hospital, Borivili (W)
Grant Medical College, JJ Hospital, Byculla
BYL Nair Medical College and Hospital, Mumbai Central
LTMG Medical College and Hospital, Sion
KEM Medical College and Hospital, Parel
St Georges Hospital, CST
GT Hospital, Fort
Cama and Albless Hospital, Dhobi Talao 

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