Dead man's case files go missing from JJ Hospital

Updated: May 22, 2019, 08:35 IST | Vinod Kumar Menon

Matter comes to fore when cops write to JJ hospital asking for his files after court directs them to reinvestigate his death

Dead man's case files go missing from JJ Hospital
Pic for representation/Getty Images

It's been over a month now that the Malkapur police wrote to JJ Hospital asking for the treatment file of a 42-year-old man who died while undergoing treatment six years back, but the doctors and clerical staff of the hospital's record section have not been able to find them yet. The hospital administration has now written a letter to the JJ Marg police informing them about the missing file and requesting an investigation followed by appropriate action in the matter.

According to hospital sources, the Malkapur police had written to JJ Hospital on April 11 stating that they have been directed by the Judicial Magistrate, First Class, Malkapur, to reinvestigate the case of Kamrubi Sikandar Khan v/s Nazima Praveen Firoz Khan, and the court was keen to know the reason behind not conducting a postmortem on Firoz Khan's body after he died on September 28, 2013. A police officer said, "After Khan's death, his mother Kamrubi Sikandar Khan filed a complaint against her daughter-in-law Nazima Praveen Firoz Khan, who she alleged killed her son in connivance with her paramour. The court had accepted the mother's plea and directed the Malkapur cops to investigate the case." As they did not find any merit to the complaint, the investigating officer submitted a no case report to the court. When Khan's mother challenged this again, the court directed the police to reinvestigate the case.

Interestingly, the current dean, medical superintendent and even the medical record clerk of JJ were not working at the hospital when this incident happened. However, according to sources, the only person who was attached to the hospital then – professor and unit head Dr Wiqar Shaikh – was not able to recall Khan's line of treatment. When contacted, Dr Shaikh refused to comment on the case. Both the dean of the hospital Dr Ajay Chandanwale and medical superintendent Dr Sanjay Surase were unavailable for comments.

Also Read: BMC turns to JJ hospital to learn how to convince its own doctors

Senior police inspector Shirish Gaikwad of JJ Marg police station said, "We need to conduct an inquiry from all possible angles. JJ Hospital is the custodian of the treatment file, and we have to find out whether it was deliberately misplaced or lost."

According to hospital sources, the Malakpur police had also attached the death intimation card, issued by JJ Hospital on September 29, 2013 and signed by the residential medical officer with the letter. The card mentioned that Khan was admitted to the hospital on September 13, 2013 and he died on the 16th day while being treated at the CCU.

Though the death was certified as natural, senior doctors believe there are serious discrepancies in the card. They said the cause of death makes it fit for a postmortem and mentioned that a death due to traumatic injuries to the cervical spine being declared natural raised suspicion. Secondly, according to them, the resident medical officer never signs the death intimation card. It is the job of the treating doctor.

"It is impossible to recall the line of treatment given to a patient without having the relevant case files. We usually receive hundreds of patients daily for OPD and admission, and here we are inquiring about a case that happened six years ago," said a doctor.

Policespeak

Confirming the letter sent to JJ Hospital, inspector Hanumant Gaikwad of Malkapur police station said they have asked for the file related to Khan's line of treatment and death, and more clarity on why a postmortem was not done.

Also Read: Mumbai: Thief who stole JJ hospital patients' shoes finally arrested

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