Chhattisgarh

Infant dies as ambulance door gets locked, father told can’t break open window as its ‘government property’

The Hush Post: In a horrific incident which shows how cheap the life of the poor is in India, a Bihari couple lost their two-month-old child in Chhattisgarh capital Raipur. The reason for the child’s death was a malfunctioning ambulance door which did not open despite attempts to open it for two hours.

What is more disturbing is the ambulance staff did not allow the father of the child to break open one of the windows to get the child out. He was warned against damaging government property. The infant had been referred for a cardiac surgery for a hole in the heart to Raipur’s Dr Bhim Rao Ambedkar Hospital after his parents had consulted doctors at AIIMS in Delhi. The couple originally from Bihar reached Raipur by train. Ambika Kumar, the father, called for the free ambulance service, Sanjeevani Express, supported by the government.

When they reached the hospital, the door of the ambulance got stuck. Despite struggling with the ambulance door for over two hours and despite help from a mechanic, they were unable to open the door, while the child was still inside with the parents. When Kumar wanted to break open the window, he was told he couldn’t do so. There was no oxygen cylinder in the ambulance, due to insufficient oxygen the small baby got asphyxiated and died inside the vehicle.

According to media reports, GVK EMRI (Emergency Management and Research Institute), which runs the ambulance service, denied the couple’s allegation. The small glass screen behind driver’s seat was broken later but by the time the child had died.

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