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Posted at: May 26, 2019, 6:47 PM; last updated: May 26, 2019, 6:47 PM (IST)

Lady doctors on the run after 'driving' tribal colleague to suicide

Lady doctors on the run after 'driving' tribal colleague to suicide
Photo for representation.

Shiv Kumar
Tribune News Service
Mumbai, May 26

The Mumbai police have booked three lady doctors attached to the state-run BYL Nair Hospital for allegedly driving a tribal medical student to suicide.

The police have registered a First Information Report against the doctors, Hema Ahuja, Bhakti Mehare and Ankita Khandelwal for allegedly mocking Dr Payal Tadvi, a Scheduled Tribe in person and in WhatsApp groups. Dr Tadvi hanged herself to death in her hostel room on May 22 at the end of her shift, police said.

Officials at the Nair Hospital said all the three doctors who allegedly harassed Dr Payal have been suspended. The three women, who were pursuing MD degrees, are now on the run and the police are on the lookout for them. “They have switched off their mobile phones but we are questioning their families and will soon find them,” a police official said. The three allegedly escaped from the hostel as soon as police arrived to investigate the suicide, sources said.

According to the police, Dr Tadvi’s mother filed a complaint that she was harassed by the senior doctors who often threatened to keep her out of operation theatres or perform deliveries. The victim’s mother alleged that Dr Payal was often mocked for being a tribal and frequently humiliated by her harassers.

She further alleged that authorities at the Nair hospital did not take cognizance of Dr Payal’s complaints which left her frustrated. The victim, who hails from Maharashtra’s Jalgaon district, had joined the MD course at the Topiwala National Medical College which is part of the Nair Hospital in May 2018. In her complaint, Dr Payal’s mother said the harassment began shortly after she joined the course.

Following Dr Payal’s suicide, the Maharashtra government said it was tightening anti-ragging norms in post-graduate medical colleges. “The Maharashtra government has set up a committee to frame new rules and enhance punishment for those found guilty of ragging,” Dr T Lahane, Director, Directorate Medical Education and Research (DMER) told reporters here this afternoon.

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