Mumbai: Fire was a mishap, no negligence in KEM, claims BMC
Civic body tosses compensation ball in Mayor's court, draft policy to be discussed next week.
The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) administration declared in the general body meeting on Friday that the fire in baby Prince Rajbhar’s ventilator was an accident and that there was no negligence on part of the KEM Hospital where he is being treated. Citing the lack of a policy on compensation, it then tossed the ball in the Mayor's court on providing relief to the baby’s kin.
Mayor Vishwanath Mahadeshwar in turn said that he will decide on a policy in a group leaders’ meeting on November 20.
Prince suffered 22 per cent burns in the fire that occurred on November 7 and subsequently, lost his left arm due to severe wounds. The two-month-old amputee’s father Pannelal Rajbhar filed a police complaint on Wednesday.
Corporators from all parties again demanded compensation for the child and action against concerned officers on Friday. Additional Municipal Commissioner Ashwini Joshi said that the inquiry report revealed that the incident was just an accident and there wasn't any negligence on part of the staff. On the contrary, claimed Joshi, the staff reacted immediately and ensured no further injury was caused to the infant.
"Fire extinguishers and other equipment were in working condition, so we cannot call it negligence," Joshi said. Joshi also refused to declare compensation in the absence of a policy. "BMC is considering a scheme where patients will be covered under the group insurance policy if there is such an incident. BMC will charge a nominal fee for it at the time of admission," said Joshi.
Earlier this year, the Mayor had declared R5 lakh for kin of the victims in the Malad water reservoir wall collapse incident. Mahadeshwar admitted that there should be a policy to compensate victims in such incidents. "We will discuss drafting a policy in the political parties' group-leaders' meeting next Wednesday. This is to ensure that the solution is not only for this incident but for all future instances," he said.
BJP corporator Abhijit Samant suggested that corporators give their one month's salary to Prince's family if BMC cannot give relief.
Day when draft policy on compensation would be discussed
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