Dr. Payal Tadvi, a postgraduate student of gynaecology committed suicide on May 22, 2019, after being allegedly tortured by three of her seniors. Hours before Dr. Payal died, she told her mother Abeda that she was unable to bear the torment from her seniors. Hours after the conversation, one of Dr. Payal Tadvi's friends came to her room to call her for dinner, but she didn't respond. Her worried friends informed guards, who broke open the door and found her hanging by a dupatta from a ceiling fan in the room. She was taken to the emergency ward, where doctors declared her dead. The body was then taken to JJ Hospital
Dr Payal Tadvi's mother Abeda filed an FIR against the seniors, identified as Dr. Hema Ahuja, Dr. Bhakti Mehar, and Dr. Ankita Khandelwal. Two of the accused, Dr. Hema Ahuja and Dr. Bhakti Mehar, were Payal's roommates for a few days until she was allotted a room to stay. Abeda alleged that the harassment started then. They would throw away her stuff and use her bed sheet to clean their feet. When she complained, Abeda said that she suggested her to ignore it and focus on her work
Dr. Payal Tadvi's mother, Abeda revealed that the final straw that broke Payal was the humiliation she was subjected to on a Whatsapp group of medical students over a dinner outing on May 21. Her husband, Dr. Salman Tadvi, too, said Payal had cried bitterly on the day of her death, as the seniors had kept taunting her about the dinner. Abeda Tadvi said that a day before her death, she had gone out for dinner. When one of the accused doctors saw her selfies posted in another WhatsApp group, she started humiliating her. She was accused of wasting time and not bothering about her patients as she had taken admission on tribal quota. The doctors accused Payal of shamelessly having food and grinning. and threatened to show the photo to the dean and complain about it
Dr. Payal's parents said before handing over her phone to the police, they had taken several screenshots of the chats on the group, which clearly show how their daughter was harassed by the other doctors on various occasions. The messages are from a group called Reminders. The trio would constantly taunt Payal over something or the other. If she did not respond to their medical queries regarding patients, they would call her unprofessional
Mother Abeda said that Dr. Payal Tadvi was threatened that she would not be allowed into the operation theatre or perform deliveries and not be allowed to study just because she went out for dinner. Abeda asked her daughter Payal to send the names of the doctors who were harassing her
Dr. Salman Tadvi, husband of Dr. Payal Tadvi told mid-day that his wife had cried throughout her morning duty on the day of her death because the absconding trio of seniors kept taunting her about going out for dinner the previous night. On the night of May 21, Dr. Payal was rather cheerful while speaking on the phone to Dr. Salman. She told him she was going to Mohammed Ali Road with her friends for dinner. That was the last time they spoke; they'd promised to meet the next evening
Dr. Salman, an assistant professor in the department of anesthesiology at HBT Medical college and Cooper hospital, said that on the fateful day, Payal was assigned as a second assistant for the operation duty. The three absconding seniors were also present with other staff nurses and the unit head. Payal was crying throughout her duty. Eyewitnesses informed that the accused trio kept taunting and harassing her about going out for dinner the previous night and supposedly trying to evade her duties
Dr. Payal also spoke with her mother about the same. At 4 pm, Payal phoned her mother after coming to her room. She was inconsolable; she hadn't even eaten her lunch. She continued sobbing and told her mother that she was taunted in the OT by the three seniors. Her mother asked her to have lunch and advised her not to think too much about what had happened. Another postgraduate student who was also present outside the OT at the time and even the patient who was taken up for surgery witnessed the entire happening
The next evening, around 7.30 pm, Dr. Salman was at his Jacob Circle home when he received a call from hospital authorities informing him that Dr Payal Tadvi was in a critical condition. Within 10 minutes, he reached the emergency ward and found the doctors giving her CPR. Even Dr Salman gave her CPR and tried to revive her, but by then everything was over. Dr. Payal had been telling Dr. Salman about the ragging and caste-based harassment she was facing from the accused seniors since the last seven to eight months. He kept encouraging her to be bold and move on from it. She had received temporary respite from the nuisance
After Dr. Payal was found hanging in her hostel room on May 22, the accused trio, Dr. Hema Ahuja, Dr. Bhakti Mehere and Dr. Ankita Khandelwal went absconding. On May 25, they wrote to Central MARD blaming her death on the workload in the hospital and demanding a fair investigation into the matter. The letter states, "You all are aware about the workload in residency and you all really believe [being] burdened with workload is ragging?...If heavy workload is given [the] name of ragging, then we will have been ragging someone while performing our basic duties, then all of us should be blamed as all the workload and pressure is always transferred from our sections and department."
In December 2018, Dr. Salman and Dr. Payal had complained about the harassment and torture, and as a corrective step, she was shifted to another unit. But in February, Dr. Payal was brought back to the unit headed by Dr. Yi Ching Ling. Once again, the trio started troubling her. A week before this incident, Dr. Salman had complained to Dr. Ching Ling about the harassment, but she ignored it. Dr. Ching Ling refused to comment on the allegations
On several occasions, Abeda Tadvi and Dr. Payal's husband, Dr. Salman Tadvi, an assistant professor in the department of anesthesiology at HBT Medical college and Cooper hospital, complained to the Nair Hospital authorities about the caste-based harassment and ragging she was facing, but nobody paid heed to it
Dr. Salman also said on the day of the incident, the absconding doctors were seen banging the door of Payal's room and were present when the security guard was called to open the door. Dr. Salman said, "Why were they present there? Why did they not wait to meet me and why did they flee from the campus? Payal's room had been left open for an hour. We do not know if any crucial evidence has gone missing from there."
Amidst the ongoing internal investigation pertaining to the suicide case of a post-graduate student, Dr. Payal Salman Tadvi on May 22, the BYL Nair Hospital suspended the head of its Gynaecology department, Dr. Yi Ching Ling until further notice. The hospital also created an internal investigation committee in order to look into allegations by the victim's mother, Abeda Tadvi, that Payal was being harassed by three of her female seniors on grounds of her caste and had also been subjected to ragging
Almost a week after Dr. Payal Tadvi committed suicide, a state inquiry committee confirmed she was indeed subjected to casteist slurs by her seniors. This was announced on Tuesday by State Medical Education Minister Girish Mahajan, who promised that the three accused would be arrested. The accused doctors — Hema Ahuja, Ankita Khandelwal, and Bhakti Mehare have claimed in a letter that they were not involved in the ragging or harassment of Dr. Payal, but investigations have found them to be guilty. Mahajan confirmed the inquiry's report, which has shown the deceased medico was subjected to targeted harassment and her seniors did make casteist remarks against her
Dr. Payal's family said at the protest that her suicide was equivalent to circumstantial murder. Explaining the allegations, her husband Dr. Salman Tadvi said there is a possibility that the accused trio removed her suicide letter while recovering her body, "When Payal wasn't answering their calls, they reached her room, broke down the door and recovered her body. After this, her room remained open for an hour even though it was a crime scene. There is a circumstantial possibility of the accused doctors removing her suicide letter when they found it because they knew they are at fault."
Another revelation has come about in the case of Dr. Payal Tadvi's suicide. Close to 10 days before she took the extreme step, her mother Abeda had visited the dean of Topiwala National Medical college and BYL Nair hospital, Dr. Ramesh Bharmal, with another relative Asha and filed a complaint citing harassment by seniors and requesting a change in Dr. Payal's unit. However, when Dr Payal's husband Dr. Salman was informed about it, he came to the hospital and asked for the letter to be retracted.
The complaint mentioned all the torture being faced by Dr Payal since a year, and how she was unable to shower for as much as four days due to the work pressure, which had also resulted in an infection. At the end of complaint, Abeda had urged the dean Dr Ramesh Bharmal to change Dr. Payal's unit so she can get away from the daily torture. Dr Bharmal said, "Had this letter been submitted to us, we would have surely acted upon it. Neither the family nor the unit head approached by them reached out to me."
Even as students and academics at Topiwala National Medical College and BYL Nair Hospital are aghast at the way Dean Dr. Ramesh Bharmal has been dealing with the suicide of Dr. Payal Tadvi, he came up with a shocking decision. He replaced the head of the gynaecology department unit to which Dr. Payal belonged – Dr. Yi Ching Ling – with an additional professor without giving a written communication in the matter. Senior academics say he simply asked a junior doctor over the phone to communicate the same. Speaking to mid-day, dean Dr. Bharmal said that they have realigned the unit. Instead of Dr. Ling, now Dr. Sarvade, the additional professor, will run the unit
Amidst the row over the suicide of the 22-year-old Dr Payal Tadvi, a protest was held outside the BYL Nair Hospital in Mumbai on May 28 by the victim's mother Abeda Tadvi along with her family members, locals and various social organisations. Dr Payal's husband Dr Salman said that the situation remained unchanged after her return from the posting and accused the administration of not doing enough in the case
Several junior doctors from medical colleges like KEM, Sion, Cooper, JJ also gathered to demand justice for Dr. Payal. All of them refuted the three accused doctors' claim of Dr. Payal taking the extreme step due to work pressure. A junior medical student pursuing MBBS at KEM hospital said, "Dr. Payal had completed her MBBS and completed a year-long rural posting, which is considered hectic and pressurising. If she survived that, post-graduation is much easier; it can't break down a 26-year-old. When a doctor commits suicide, consider the amount of harassment she had to go through."
All the three accused doctors in the case- Ankita Khandelwal, Bhakti Mehre and Hema Ahuja have been arrested and are likely to be produced before the court on May 29. Mehre and Ahuja were arrested on May 28. The three doctors were arrested for allegedly abetting the post-graduate medical student Payal Tadvi, who belonged to the Scheduled Tribe community. Meanwhile, the National Commission for Women (NCW) has taken a suo moto cognisance of the matter and written to the hospital administration, requesting to appraise with the action taken in the case
In a shocking case, Dr. Payal Tadvi, 26, hanged herself at her room on May 22, 2019, following which her family alleged that her seniors had taunted her by ragging and hurling casteist abuses leading up to her death. The Mumbai Police arrested three doctors in connection with the death of postgraduate medical student Payal Salman Tadvi and registered case against them. Here's what we know so far about the case. All pics/Dr. Payal Tadvi Facebook, mid-day
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