In an incident that has sent alarm bells ringing at one of Chandigarh’s premium health hubs, an yet-to-be-identified woman on Wednesday (November 15) night entered the gynecology ward of PGI and injected one of the patients there with a foreign substance.
The police who have lodged a case of attempted culpable homicide (Section 308 of the Indian Penal Code) in the incident and launched a probe — claimed that the woman gained access to the ward by claiming that she was a nurse. Her target, investigators said, was a 24-year-old woman, identified as Harmeet Kaur, who had been referred to PGI from Banur in Patiala.
Harmeet’s condition at present is stated to be critical. Contacted, Professor Vanita Suri, head of Department of Obstetrics and gynecology, PGI, said that the patient was in the trauma ICU and was being treated for puerperal sepsis with acute kidney injury. She added that Dr Vanita Jain from the department was conducting a probe regarding the ‘nurse’ who administered some injection to the patient on Wednesday night.
According to investigators, the suspect entered the gynecology ward, where Harmeet is admitted, around 11.30 pm on Novemeber 15. Kaur, police claim, after being injected, managed to click a picture of the accused on her mobile phone. The picture, however, is hazy and has not helped the police in making a breakthrough in the case.
According to the statement given to the police by victim’s sister-in-law, Jatinder Kaur, Harmeet had recently given birth in Banur, Patiala. She was subsequently referred from there to the PGI after her condition deteriorated after delivery. At PGI she was initially admitted to the ICU, before being shifted to the gynecology ward.
Late on November 15, an unknown woman entered the gynecology ward and claimed to be a nurse from the kidney department. The woman further claimed that she had been sent by a doctor to administer an injection to Harmeet.
However, Harmeet became suspicious after the injection had been administered and started questioning the woman about the doctor’s name who had sent her as well as about her own identity. On being questioned, the woman became nervous and hastily fled from the ward.
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A police officer said, “CCTV cameras in Nehru Hospital were found to be non-functional. We are also examining the patient’s family background.”
Inspector Malkit Singh, SHO of Police Station 11, stated that an investigation had been launched in the case, while adding that the victim was suffering from multiple health-related issues. Medical records from PGIMER have been collected and they were being studied by the police to help in their probe.
A case has been registered under Section 308 of the IPC at Sector 11 police station, and efforts are being made to identify and apprehend the accused.