On Saturday, October 30, a three-and-a-half-year-old boy in the city of Hyderabad lost his life while being admitted to a local hospital. The infant was suffering from pneumonia and was shifted to Niloufer Hospital from a private hospital three days ago, reported The New Indian Express.
According to local news reports, the boy breathed his last on Saturday, after his oxygen mask was allegedly removed by the ward boy to be offered to another young patient.
The TNIE report recorded an official statement from the infant's father who mentioned that the ward boy did so for not being paid a petty bribe of ₹100.
"He was in dire need of oxygen. Ward boy Subhash demanded ₹100 from us to connect the supply lines to his bed. When we refused to pay him, he just walked out of the ward," Mohammad Azam told TNIE reporter adding that minutes after he was denied the bribe, the young boy breathed his last.
Hospital denies allegations
Another report on the grave matter by local daily Deccan Chronicle called the allegations false on behalf of the statement made by the Director of Medical Education Dr K. Ramesh Reddy.
According to Dr Ramesh Reddy, the ward boy Subhash who was eventually suspended after the family protested, was removed from his contractual services on grounds of asking for bribery and not because of the removal of the oxygen mask. The incident was investigated thoroughly and the initial allegation that the oxygen mask was removed was proved to be false, he told DC.
DCP central zone P. Vishwa Prasad, also quoted in the DC report, mentioned that the family didn't want to lodge any complaint and the boy suffered from a severe lung ailment.
Earlier in September, the government-run hospital made news across local dailies for being crowded with patients and nearing its full capacity.
The 1400-bed hospital had almost reached 90 per cent of its capacity with young patients mainly children suffering from viral fevers, bronchitis, pneumonia, dengue, and other seasonal illnesses, a report by The Hindu stated. The hospital is known to receive cases from nearby districts and other remote corners of Telangana.