Hyderabad: Trouble is mounting for Gandhi Hospital administration after a family of a 35-year-old man, who succumbed to Covid-19 on June 10, alleged that his body has gone missing from the mortuary.

According to family, the man, who used to run LifeCare Medical Hall in Hyderabad’s Mehdipatnam area, was shifted to Gandhi hospital on June 8 after he was tested COVID -19 positive.

On June 10, his relatives were informed that the man has succumbed and asked to identify his body at the hospital mortuary. However, according to the family, the man’s body was missing from the mortuary and there is no response from the Gandhi administration.

“On the morning of June 10, we received a call from Gandhi informing us that our brother has expired. Until 5 pm they made us wait outside the mortuary. There were around 12 bodies in the morgue. But we couldn’t find our brother’s body,” said the family.

The family alleged there was no response from the Gandhi administration after body went missing.

“Everyone is saying that they will look into the matter. After continuous requests they allowed us to check inside the ICU. We had hope that he might still be undergoing treatment. But he is missing from ICU as well. He was initially admitted to Medicity hospital on June 7 for fever. The hospital told us his condition is stable and can be discharged in two days. But after COVID result, was shifted to Gandhi,” said the family.

Meanwhile, the Chilkalguda police have started searching the body inside Gandhi hopsital. According to police, there is no entry of the man’s case in the mortuary register. The investigating team hence suspect the body to have been left somewhere on the corridors of the hospital. Since there are no CCTV cameras in the hospital, the officers are visiting each floor in search of the body.

Update

In a development in the case,  it has been revealed that the body of the Mehadipatnem man has been given away by the hopsital to another family in Pahadi Shareef, who have buried him already.

The relative of a Covid_19 patient who died at the Gandhi Hospital a few days back has confirmed that the body of Mehadipatnem man was swapped with the dead body of their family member. Reportedly, the body was buried in a graveyard in Pahadishareef area by the family after realising it doesn’t belong to their kin.

This is not for the first case when the body of a deceased COVID patient has gone missing in Telangana

On June 9, Gandhi Hospital had sent the wrong body of a Covid-19 patient for burial. The patient’s family members noticed the mistake and allegedly assaulted the doctors. This landed Gandhi hospital in a fresh controversy. This is one of the reasons behind the ongoing junior doctor’s protest at Gandhi.

A 48-year-old COVID-19 patient from Begumpet was admitted to Gandhi Hospital a few days ago. He died on Tuesday. His family members were informed and his body was taken for burial.

When the family arrived at the graveyard, they saw that it was someone else’s body.

When they questioned the staff, an argument broke out. Later the family allegedly assaulted the staff. While family members alleged that Gandhi staff had swapped the body, officials denied the claim.

After completing all the procedures at the hospital, his relatives went to identify the body and informed officials that it does not belong to their kin.

Later the body was sent back to Gandhi hospital. However, his wife and other family members went to the hospital and identified the same body. Later the body was shifted again for burial.

Earlier, a woman from Vanasthalipuram had alleged that her husband, who was a Covid-19 patient, has gone missing from the state-run Gandhi hospital, which is the nodal center for Coronavirus in Hyderabad.

The man was allegedly cremated by the hospital without informing the family. The woman approached the High Court seeking justice. The court came down heavily on the state government asking how can a hospital cremate Covid-19 patient’s body without informing the family.

Dheeshma Puzhakkal

Dheeshma Puzhakkal is currently a Reporter with Newsmeter. An alumnus of Hyderabad Central University, she has interned with Greater Kashmir newspaper and NDTV. Dheeshma has also made short films and documentaries. Her documentary ‘Still I Rise’, which is based on sex-trafficking in Hyderabad’s Old City, has earned accolades in several film festivals, such as International Documentary and Short Film Festival, Kerala (IDSFFK). An avid foodie, she loves to travel and listen to stories that others tell. Photography is one of her all-time interests. She has extensively written on satellite-based journalism, health, consumer, and data stories besides covering anti-crime investigative agencies.

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