After a case of a coronavirus patient's body being cremated without informing family members, a case of a missing COVID-19 patient has come to light in Mumbai.
A 67-year-old patient was admitted to Mumbai's KEM Hospital on May 14, his family members said. He was shifted to the ICU after he tested positive for the highly infectious virus. But since May 19, the patient has been missing and no one knows where he is.
"We received a call on the morning of May 20 and I could not attend to it. I called back at 10:30 in the morning. They said they could not locate the patient and asked if we had transferred him. I told them I did not know about this. We had left him there and we have been quarantined. After that, they started searching (for him). Four to five days went in that. We still don't know where he is," a relative of the missing patient told NDTV.
Mumbai Police registered a missing person's complaint five days after the patient went missing.
BJP leader Kirit Somaiya has now written to the chief of Mumbai's civic body, about the issue. "I have spoken to the dean of KEM Hospital. The Bhoiwada Police have told me that they have asked for a detailed report from the KEM Hospital authorities. The Deputy Commissioner of Police also believes that the family should get justice. We will try and find out where he is and share this information with the family," Mr Somaiya said.
This incident has come to light days after a Mumbai man who died of COVID-19 was reportedly cremated by the civic authorities without informing the family. A missing complaint was registered by the family of the patient in that case too. Investigations in that case have revealed that the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) or the city's civic body could not locate the family and hence, handed over the body to the police, saying it was an unclaimed body.
Rakesh Varma, a resident of Barkatalinagar in Wadala area of Mumbai, died on May 17. He was cremated by police officials. His family says they did not know he had been cremated. They did not even know about his death.
In the case of the missing patient at KEM Hospital, the police are yet to locate the man. Questions have emerged on how a 67-year-old COVID-19 patient can go missing from a hospital ward without anyone noticing.