A doctor at Rajawadi Hospital has alleged that she was sexually harassed by the working president of the Shiv Sena-led union Municipal Karmachari Kamgar Sena. Ironically, she heads the cell in the hospital that deals with complaints of sexual harassment. The complainant is a medical officer and an administrative in-charge of Rajawadi Hospital. Dr Rajani Jagtap was on duty on Wednesday afternoon at the gynaecological ward, which was filled to capacity. In order to accommodate 15 more patients in the ward, the doctor shifted five patients from it to an empty male burns ward.
One of the patients shifted to the ward was the mother-in-law of Bhagwan Kadam, an assistant radiology technician in the hospital. Unhappy with the shift, Kadam called up Sunil Chitnis, the leader of the union. Dr Jagtap alleged that she then received a phone call from Chitnis at 4 am on her official landline. Chitnis said, “Bai, tumhi private dhandhe karto ka?”
“I was shocked to hear what he said and immediately disconnected the call. How could anyone call a doctor a prostitute?” said Dr Jagtap.
“I had decided to shift those five patients to the empty male burns ward, after providing them with medicines and dinner, only because their condition was stable. Kadam had an argument with me over this issue and though I tried to explain the situation to him, he didn’t seem to understand and got very angry.”
A black ribbon protest has been initiated in Rajawadi hospital by the medical officers and hospital staff against the incident. Dr Jagtap also filed a complaint with the Savitri Bai Phule Gender Resource Centre yesterday. Kadam (48) told MiD DAY, “My mother-in-law recently underwent an operation and was in the gynaecological ward, and since then she had already been shifted three times to different wards. My brother in-law’s wife had to look all over the hospital before finding her sitting all alone on the third floor corridor.”
He added, “I had tried talking to the doctor but she was very rude. My mother-in-law complained of a stomach ache after that. This just isn’t fair. I have worked with this hospital for so long, and I yet was treated like this. That is why I asked Chitnis for help.”Kadam, however, claims he doesn’t know anything about the brief conversation that transpired between the doctor and Chitnis.
The medical superintendent of Rajawadi hospital Dr Shubhash Poyekar said, “We are looking into this matter and the decisions will be taken accordingly.”