CASE LAW: April 25th, 2018

25 April, 2018


DR. ANIL JAIN & ANR. V. DEVENDRA KUMAR (NHRDC-REVISION PETITION NO. 1691 OF 2012)
ORDER DATED: 10.10.2012

FACTS:

  • On 13.6.2006 the Complainant’s deceased wife Urmila Rani was admitted in civil hospital, Ambala City at about 2.10. p.m. complaining of pain in her abdomen and umbilical hernia.  Dr. Anil Jain examined her and informed Mr. Subhash Chander Bansal, brother-in-law of the complainant, who had accompanied her to the hospital, that operation was to be performed. 

  • Dr. Anil Jain demanded a sum of Rs.3,000/- from Subhash Chandra Bansal, who gave him a sum of Rs.2,000/- only and promised to pay residue amount after the operation. 

  • It is alleged that instead of conducting the operation, the doctor demanded the remaining amount.  Urmila Rani was operated on 15.6.2006.  It is alleged that at the time of operation, the complainant was not present and his signatures were fabricated by the doctor showing the consent of the complainant. 

  • The very next day after the operation, the complainant’s wife died and when the complainant made a request for conducting autopsy on the body of his wife but the doctor did not pay any heed to his request.

  • Hence, the complaint was filed before the District Forum.  The District Forum dismissed the complaint vide order dated 16.11.2010. 

  • Thereafter, an appeal was filed before the State Commission which accepted the appeal and directed the opposite parties, jointly and severally, to pay damages of Rs. 2 lakh as compensation and Rs.50,000/- as compensation for mental agony, harassment, physical pain and suffering.

 

DEFENCE VERSION:

  • The Opposite Parties contended that the patient was properly examined by Dr. Anil Jain and her condition was normal till the evening of 13.6.2006.  The patient was operated under general anesthesia, the hernial sac contained adherent omentum, gut was normal and there was no intra-abdominal collection.  The operation was a major surgery and was completed successfully.

  • The patient was shifted to female surgical ward in stable condition after surgery.  Nasogastric tube was put to avoid any undue pressure on repaired portion of hernia defect. The patient was being looked after by her brother, Raj Kumar who was working as a ward servant in this hospital and was doing his duty and that there was no medical negligence on the part of the petitioner.

 

INQUIRY REPORT:

  • The State of Haryana through Collector, Ambala, Haryana in its written statement has mentioned that there were two preliminary enquiry reports in this case.  The first inquiry was conducted by Dr. Vinod Gupta, M.S. (General Surgery), SMO, Ambala.  He also required Dr. Anil Jain to record the statement but he did not appear to make a statement before the above said inquiry commission.  Thereafter, the inquiry was conducted by Dr. O. P. Arya, who recorded the statement of Dr. Anil Jain.  The conclusion of the inquiry report is significant, which is also reproduced as hereinunder.

 
“In my opinion after going through the statements and record no staff nurse was found guilty while performing the duty and Dr. Anil Jain had done the following negligences in managing and treating the case:
1. He has unnecessarily delayed the surgical intervention which was mandatory in a case of ‘OBESTRUCED HERNIA’.  The early operation could have saved the life of Urmil.

2. He overlooked the possibility of Electrolyte imbalance in the management of such a serious patient who was being given ‘Nil’ orally and was on continuous Ryle’s Tube Aspiration and I/V fluids in pre-operative, operative and post-operative period.  After going through the whole indoor records the Electrolyte imbalance was the strongest possibility causing death in the case.  And also in post-operative period no ultrasound abdomen was advised to defect any intra-abdominal bleed or other post-operative complication.

3. Integrity of Dr. Anil Jain’s conduct regarding honesty is doubtful as the complainant has submitted the affidavit in which he has stated that Dr. Anil Jain allegedly demanded Rs.3000/- for operation and out of Rs.3000/- he had given Rs.2000/- to Dr. Anil Jain on 13.06.2006.

4. Dr. Anil Jain also showed official indiscipline by appearing not even a single time when he was called for a number of times i.e. 08.12.2006, 04.01.2007 and 13.02.2007.  Neither he has appeared nor was he intimated to me even for a single time.  Every time he was served letters properly but never turned up.”

 

HELD:

  • The Forum observed that the report speaks volumes of negligence against Dr. Anil Jain.  He should have cooperated with the inquiry but he did not appear before the Commission.  He chose to bury his head under the sand for the reasons best known to him. 

  • He also had failed to produce any evidence in rebuttal to the above said report.  He had alleged that Dr. Vinod Gupta was having bad blood with him but no such evidence saw the light of the day.  A mere allegation does not make the case solid and unflappable.

  • The delay and stubborn attitude adopted by the doctor disclose the whole story.

  • In view of the same, the revision petition is hereby dismissed.

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