The ravaging Covid-19 pandemic has begun to expose Madhya Pradesh's health infrastructure with daily cases crossing the 6,000-mark. So much so that due to a shortage of staff, a gardener is now collecting clinical samples at a Sanchi government hospital even as the State Health Minister is busy campaigning for a bye-election.
A gardener in the Sanchi government hospital was assigned to collect #Corona samples. Ironically Sanchi is represented by state health minister Dr Prabhuram Chaudhary who is busy in campaigning for by #elections in Damoh! @INCMPpic.twitter.com/30eTMEFqMg— Anurag Dwary (@Anurag_Dwary) April 13, 2021
For the first time yesterday, the state reported 6,489 new Covid positive cases. It was the seventh straight day of more than 4,000 new infections. Monday also marked the 11th consecutive day of a new high in fresh cases. Up to 46,577 new infections have been reported in the past 11 days.
Scenes of patients dying at hospital gates have been recorded from places like Indore, with such videos circulating on social media. A gardener in the Sanchi Government Hospital has been assigned to collect samples.
"I'm a gardener. I'm not a permanent employee of the hospital either, but I'm collecting samples because all others at the hospital have been infected," said Halke Ram.
Rajshiri Tidke, the Block Medical Officer in charge of the hospital, defended the move saying the gardener was trained for the task.
"What can we do? The staff has got infected but work has go on and, therefore, as an emergency alternative, we have trained several people, including the gardener, to collect samples," Mr Tidke said.
Ironically, Sanchi is represented by State Health Minister, Dr Prabhuram Chaudhary, who is busy in campaigning for bye-elections in Damoh.
Dr Chaudhary, a Jyotiraditya Scindia loyalist, was previously a minister in the Congress government, but shifted to the BJP when the Kamal Nath government was brought down. On Sunday, he was reportedly seen addressing an almost venue during a 'Mahila Sammelan' in Damoh.
"I am looking for a person who can tell me if the Health Minister has, in the past eight days, visited a medical college, held a review meeting and given a benefit. I want to give out a reward of Rs 11,001 to such a person," Congress spokesperson Sayyed Zafar said.