In a shocking incident of alleged medical indifference, an elderly man was tied to a hospital bed in Madhya Pradesh after he allegedly failed to make payment of fees for his treatment. The hospital, however, claimed that he was having convulsions and as a result had his hands and legs tied so that he could not hurt himself.
Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan has taken note of the matter and has promised to take strict action against the Shajapur-based hospital. The district hospital has also ordered a probe into the matter.
The man's family alleged that the hospital administration tied his legs and hands to bed after he failed to pay Rs 11,000.
"We had deposited a bill of Rs 5,000 at the time of admission but when the treatment took a few more days, we did not have the money to pay the bill," said his daughter.
The hospital, however, maintained that he was tied because he was having convulsions because of electrolyte imbalance. "He was having convulsions because of electrolyte imbalance. We tied him so that he could not hurt himself," said a doctor at the hospital.
The doctor also added that the hospital had waived off their bill on humanitarian grounds.
"A treatment meted to a senior citizen in a hospital in Shajapur has come to notice. The culprits will not be spared, strict action will be taken," the Chief Minister tweeted.
शाजापुर के एक अस्पताल में वरिष्ठ नागरिक के साथ क्रूरतम व्यवहार का मामला संज्ञान में आया है। दोषियों को बख्शा नहीं जायेगा, सख्त से सख्त कार्रवाई की जायेगी।- Shivraj Singh Chouhan (@ChouhanShivraj) June 6, 2020
Former Chief Minister and senior Congress leader Kamal Nath tweeted to say that the incident "inhuman and barbaric" in nature. "Such inhuman, barbaric treatment of an elderly person in a hospital in Shajapur. The father was held hostage by the arms and legs with ropes for not paying the hospital bill," he tweeted, sharing the video tied to the hospital bed.
The Shajapur district administration has ordered an inquiry into the matter. "We have sent a team of Sub-Divisional Magistrate (SDM) and a doctor, to the hospital to investigate the matter. This should not have happened and we will ensure that appropriate action is taken against the hospital," District Collector Dinesh Jain told news agency ANI.