A month on, Health Dept fails to complete probe into prominent journalist Muddasir Ali’s death

KWJA urges DHSK to expedite probe, share report with victim’s family

Muddasir Ali
Muddasir Ali

Srinagar: Kashmir Working Journalists Association (KWJA) is dismayed over the criminal silence maintained by the Directorate of Health Services Kashmir over the enquiry into the death of senior journalist Muddasir Ali.

Muddasir, who was a senior editor at Greater Kashmir, died exactly a month before at Chrar Sharif Sub-District hospital after the on-duty doctor allegedly failed to provide him basic life support.

“The KWJA wants to convey to the Health department authorities that our month-long silence over the enquiry should not be misconstrued as a fait accompli,” said Samaan Lateef, General Secretary KWJA.

“We have been waiting for the outcome of the enquiry for a month now. It seems the Health department wants to hide its failures and hush-up the case. Let it be clear to all that the journalist fraternity of Kashmir will pursue the case until Muddasir, his family and friends get justice.”

The alleged negligence on part of the SDH Chrari Sharief BMO, the on-duty doctor and paramedic staff was accentuated by the delay in providing Muddasir oxygen supply and lifesaving drugs at the Emergency Room, established at SDH Chrar Sharief few years ago under ‘Save Heart Initiative’.

“KWJA has learnt that Muddasir Ali was the first critical care case presented to the SDH Chrar-Sharief in past two years but the doctor on duty not only failed to save his life but forgot to even follow basic treatment protocol in pulmonary embolism or myocardial infarction cases.”

Samaan said KWJA is deeply pained to learn that Muddasir Ali had to wait for at least 10 minutes inside the hospital before the on duty doctor could wake himself up and treat him. “Even after declaring Muddasir Ali a heart attack case, the doctor failed to treat him as per the protocol laid down under Basic Life Support (BLS).”

KWJA understands that the doctor on night duty was in deep sleep when Muddasir was brought to the hospital and it is likely that the drowsiness due to sleep may have clouded his judgement after encountering a young healthy male patient needing emergency care, Samaan said.

“The hospital administration has to take responsibility for not keeping the Emergency Room functional and adequate number of doctors available during the night hours,” he said, adding, “That even basic equipment such as a stretcher was not available at the hospital on the fateful night and the doctor had to manually lift the patient in his arms with the help of the attendants should be enough to sack the BMO for negligence”.

KWJA urged Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha to ensure that the enquiry into Muddasir Ali’s death is expedited and the report is shared with his family members.