While Lieutenant Governor Najeeb Jung is involved in a bitter turf tussle with the city's AAP administration, his cook has alleged medical negligence by a Delhi government-run hospital led to his unborn child's death.
The Aruna Asaf Ali hospital, which is adjacent to the L-G's residence and the Delhi assembly, came under scanner after Mohammed Nadeem's wife delivered a stillborn baby on Thursday. "This is a complaint by an individual and has nothing to do with the LG or L-G House," said Madhur Verma, Deputy Commissioner of Police (North).
Saba Bano, 24, was brought to the institute on Thursday night. The weight of the baby was 4.5kg and, according to the family, doctors performed a vaginal delivery.
"The condition of the mother and child was serious. Though the mother survived, the baby could not be saved," a senior doctor from the hospital told Mail Today.
Sources at the institute confirmed that Nadeem works at the L-G House. "He has been here several times for regular medical check-ups," another senior doctor said.
Late-night drama followed as members of Jung's family visited the hospital and intervened in the matter. According to sources, Bano's relatives have alleged medical negligence on part of the institute.
The L-G House did not respond to calls and messages from Mail Today.
"The hospital administration has been pulled up by the L-G. Several machines were not working," a doctor from the institute said.
The battle between Jung and Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal stems from Delhi's unique position as a union territory doubling as the Capital where both the L-G and police department report to the central home ministry and the local government has no say over several important departments.
The AAP, which romped to power winning 67 of the Capital's 70 assembly seats in last year's polls, has been at loggerheads with Jung after he appointed several senior bureaucrats against the wishes of the chief minister and overruled many Delhi government picks.
Bano's family too alleged that some equipment at the hospital were out of order. Doctors could not perform a fetoscopy- an endoscopic procedure during pregnancy to allow access to the foetus, the amniotic cavity, the umbilical cord, and the foetal side of the placenta.
"One can get a close detail before the delivery through fetoscopy. Any abnormalities in foetus, placenta cord and umbilical cord can be diagnosed through the machine. Sometimes, it can also help to identify, if there are any, internal complications," a senior gynaecologist said.
Located in north Delhi, the hospital caters to around 1,000-1,200 patients every day. Its administration also manages a mortuary at Subzi Mandi, the oldest and biggest facility of its kind in the Capital. The institute is also among the 10 government hospitals that issue disability certificates to people. "We are aware of the matter.
But the reason of death cannot be determined until the postmortem report comes out," Dr Kulbhushan Goyal, deputy medical superintendent of the hospital told Mail Today. "We did our best to save the baby."
While Bano is still receiving treatment at the institute, the baby's body has been sent to Maulana Azad Medical College (MAMC) for post-mortem. Experts said in most cases with a baby weighing over 3.5 kg, a caesarean delivery is the preferred option.
"It depends on many factors. One has to perform a proper internal check-up and a pelvis access to decide on the mode of delivery. In many countries, even a baby weighing around 4.5 kg has been operated through vaginal delivery," said Dr Neeta Singh from AIIMS.
"If the weight of the baby is more than 4 kg then doctors have to be more careful for a vaginal surgery," said Dr Suneeta Mittal, director and of obstetrics at Gurgaon's Fortis Memorial Research Institute. "The weight, height and previous health record of the mother should be considered carefully."