Dr Shabista, wife of Dr Kafeel Khan (inset) who has been in jail for Gorakhpur hospital tragedy in August 2017.

Caravan News

NEW DELHI: Dr. Kafeel Khan, who was hailed as hero by media and local people for saving dozens of children at the BRD Medical College and Hospital, has been in jail for more than seven months without bail. Citing his deteriorating condition and heart ailment, his family on Saturday urged the government to take his health condition seriously as he is not getting proper medical care in the jail.

Addressing a press conference at the Press Club of India in New Delhi, Dr Kafeel’s wife Dr Shabista said that her husband is not being granted bail for the past seven months on one excuse or the other. She said that he suffered heart attack in the jail in March this year, yet he has not been granted bail nor provided required medical care.

Dr Kafeel Khan was a nodal officer at the BRD Medical College and Hospital in Gorakhpur when dozens of children died there on 11th August last year allegedly for lack of oxygen supply by the concerned company. On that day, Dr Khan was on leave. But as soon as he came to know about the tragedy, he rushed to the hospital and for next couple of days, he continuously worked and saved dozens of lives. He himself procured cylinders from the market. For his great deed, he was hailed as hero by the media and the families whose children were saved. However, a week later, the Yogi Adityanath government sacked him along with some other doctors and principal of the college. On 2nd September, he was arrested despite the District Magistrate’s report denying any lapses on Dr. Kafeel’s part.

“He has not committed any crime, yet he is in jail for about 8 months. He was off on that day. Yet, he went to the hospital and saved several lives. How can you charge him of negligence?” asked his wife Dr Shabista.

“Oxygen supply was stopped because the hospital’s budget was not passed. Is it doctor’s job to pass budget,” asked she with their two-year-old daughter in her lap. “This was administration’s failure but doctors were implicated to save them,” she said.

Regarding Dr. Kafeel’s health she said: “I have met him in jail. His condition is not good. He is living with 200 prisoners in a barrack whose capacity is 50. He suffered heart attack in March this but has not been provided proper medical care.”

Talking to the press regarding bail plea in the Allahabad High Court, Dr Kafeel’s brother Adeel Ahmad Khan said that “six hearings have taken place so far but the government’s counsel offers one excuse or the other at each hearing and thus his bail is being delayed.” The next hearing is due on 25th April.

Besides Dr Khan, three other doctors and four officials are in jail for the Gorakhpur hospital case.

Son of Dr Rajiv Mishra, former Principal of BRD Hospital, said that the government is just delaying bail to his parents.

Social activist Nadeem Khan who had met Dr Kafeel in jail recently said that the doctor has been kept in the jail as a hardcore criminal.

He also expressed concern on the way things are being delayed at the court.


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