While India is witnessing a steady rise in the number of coronavirus cases, Maharashtra seems to be the most affected state at the moment, with 1.07 lakh cases. At a time when hospitals should be operating at a war footing across the state, one hospital has chosen to ignore the call of duty.
Doctors, nurses, ward boys and office staff of a charitable trust-run medical facility, Ashwini Hospital,Solapur, chose to stay away from work even after receiving multiple show-cause notices from the district administration.
As per official statements, more than a 100 employees of the hospital, including doctors, have been booked for absenting themselves from work during the coronavirus crisis, violating the district administration’s orders.
What is surprising is that, the 133 employees in question preferred to ignore the multiple orders they received from the administration and failed to report for duty. Therefore, a police complaint has now been filed against these employees for staying away from work despite being issued repeated reminders. They have been booked under section 51B (refusing to comply with government orders) and 57 (contravention of any order) of the Disaster Management Act, and 269 (negligent act likely to spread infection of disease dangerous to life) and 336 (act endangering life or personal safety of others) of Indian Penal Code.
The Government had directed Ashwini Hospital to admit Covid-19 patients, under its regulation for private medical facilities to assign a specific number of beds to COVID patients and attend to them. However, a majority of the staff there ignored the government directive and remained absent from duty.
Following complaints received about other facilities, the Solapur Municipal Commissioner has now issued warnings to the staff of other private hospitals as well, clearly stating that strict action will be taken against those who are absent from work.