Covid suspect missing from Hyd hospital found dead

Twenty days after he went missing from government-run Gandhi Hospital, body of a COVID-19 suspect was found in the mortuary of the same hospital on Saturday.

The body of the 39-year-old was found in the mortuary of the hospital, though the hospital officials have denied that the man was brought here.

Narendra Singh, a resident of Mangalhat area in Hyderabad, had gone to Gandhi Hospital on May 31 with suspected symptoms of COVID-19.

Singh had first gone to King Koti Hospital with her mother on May 30 but she had returned home from there. Singh was alone when he was shifted to Gandhi Hospital in an ambulance as he had developed suspected symptoms. He was reportedly in touch with the family over phone till May 31.

His mother lodged a complaint with Mangalhat police station after Singh went missing. The police investigations confirmed that he was taken to Gandhi Hospital but they could not trace him. The hospital authorities, however, denied that any person by this name was admitted there.

The man’s family and police had been searching for him for 20 days. Police said the cause of the man’s death is under investigation.

Majlis Bachao Tehreek (MBT) leader Amjedullah Khan Khalid, who had been closely following the case, demanded a probe by the Crime Investigation Department (CID). He said the CCTV cameras installed in Gandhi Hospital were not functioning.

The controversy is the latest to hit Gandhi Hospital, the nodal facility for treatment of COVID patients in Telangana. It saw a series of incidents of goof-ups by the authorities and mix-up of bodies of COVID-19 patients over last few weeks.

On June 10, the hospital authorities had handed over the body of a man who had died of COVID to another family which performed the last rites.

The incident came to light after relatives of a 37-year-old man found that his body was missing.

The frantic search involving police led to shocking revelation that his body was handed over to the family of another man, who too had died of COVID. The family had buried the man.

Earlier, hospital authorities had handed over wrong body to a family who had lost their relative to COVID.

The incident had come to light when the body of the 48-year-old was brought to a graveyard and his wife who was called to have last look at the body realized it was someone else. The body was then shifted back to Gandhi Hospital and after a search by the family they found the body of their relative.

Last month, a woman claimed that her husband went missing from Gandhi Hospital where he was admitted for treatment of COVID. The hospital authorities, however, said he had died while undergoing treatment and he was cremated by GHMC as no one from the family came forward to receive the body.

The woman and her two daughters, who were also under treatment at the same hospital, claimed after their discharge that no one from the family was informed about his death. The woman has approached Telangana High Court seeking a probe.