Pune doctor sues hospital over dues worth Rs 39 lakh
Dr Anupama Mane, a cancer surgeon, has accused a Bhosri-based hospital of swindling lakhs from her through her medical services, monetary help
Instances where doctors have been accused of fleecing and overcharging patients have been reported often, but an incident of doctors allegedly cheating fellow professionals of lakhs of rupees has been recently reported from Pune's Bhosri region. The board of directors of Sant Dnyaneshwar Hospital — Vidyadhar Sarfare, Anjali Sarfare, Dipali Chinchole and Malvika Mal — has been accused of cheating Dr Anupama Mane, a Pune-based surgeon, to the tune of Rs 39 lakh, along with some other Pune-based doctors. An FIR in this regard was recently filed by Mane at the Bhosri police station.
Dr Mane, a cancer surgeon, worked as a consultant and surgeon at the hospital from 2003 till around 2017. While Sarfare is the president of the hospital's board, his wife Anjali is the secretary, and Chinchole the treasurer. "While I got my payment on time earlier, they began delaying it later. I would receive my payment once in two to three months," Dr Mane told mid-day.
Aided hospital monetarily
Around the same time, the hospital and the medical foundation running it were allegedly facing a fund crunch and Dr Mane was approached for help. As she did not want the hospital to shut down, Dr Mane provided financial assistance in installments. "I gave a total of Rs 24 lakh to the hospital as aid," she said, adding that this was done though some of her consultation and surgery fees — over R15 lakh — that were still pending with the hospital.
A meeting was called in this regard by the hospital board in August 2017 when Dr Mane presented her case.
"The old board of directors asked me to submit my pending bills to the new board, along with some other doctors who too had some dues. A deal in this regard was also signed between the old and new board of directors. However, the new board that took over the hospital, never returned any money," the doctor alleged.
Instead, Dr Mane was told that she would be made the director of the hospital's cancer department. "But I was neither made the director nor was my money returned by the new team of Sarfare and Chinchole," Dr Mane alleged.
Other doctors cry foul
Dr Swapnil Bhalgat, a city-based orthopaedic, said that he has around R15 lakh stuck with the hospital. "It was almost the beginning of my career when I worked for the hospital and had a very bad experience," said Dr Bhalgat, who worked as a consultant at Sant Dnyaneshwar Hospital from around 2011 to 2016. He too said that he would receive his payments regularly initially but the new body, which took over around 2014, has "deceived us."
"I have around Rs 3 to Rs 4 lakh pending dues with the hospital and have been fighting to get my hard-earned money," said Dr Payal Mehta, a radiologist, who worked at the Bhosri-based hospital during the same period.
Accused on anticipatory bail
A case has been registered at the Bhosri police station under Sections 418 (cheating), 420 (dishonesty) and 34 (common intention) of the Indian Penal Code. "The accused have applied for anticipatory bail and further investigation in the matter is on," said Sub-Inspector Aniruddha Sawarde of Bhosri police station. While accused Dipali Chinchole refused to comment on the issue, the other accused remained unavailable for comment.
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