The quack Sheikh Sarfarajuddin, who had no medical expertise, was hired on a 'doctor’s fee' of Rs 8,000.
Kolkata: In a tragic incident, a meritorious 16-year-old Class 10 boy in West Bengal’s Birbhum died on Thursday night after being treated by an air-condition mechanic impersonating as a doctor in a critical care ambulance on way to hospital.
The quack Sheikh Sarfarajuddin, who had no medical expertise, was hired on a “doctor’s fee” of Rs 8,000.
The boy, Arijit Das, was being taken to a Kolkata hospital from a nursing home in Burdwan for treatment, after he complained of a prolonged bout of fever and chest pain.
The family also paid Rs 8,000 for the ambulance to rush the boy to Kolkata hospital for specialised treatment when his condition deteriorated.
The doctors in Kolkata declared him brought dead.
During the journey, the family grew suspicious seeing the driver fixing the oxygen cylinder and the doctor remaining silent. However in Kolkata, once it was found Arijit was dead, the entire scam was unearthed.
The fake doctor Sheikh Sarfarajuddin had no medical expertise and didn't know how to use the life support system in the ambulance.
Both the ambulance driver and quack tried to persuade the family for not travelling in the ambulance in fear of being caught.
The boy's family was not allowed inside the ambulance and had to hire a car to get to the hospital. "They told us that he was a big doctor and he won't allow any disturbance in the ambulance. We didn't know he wasn't a doctor," Ranjit Das said.
Based on the complaint filed by Arijit’s family members, the Jadavpur police (East) has arrested 25-year-old Sheikh Sarfarajuddin and the 26-year-old driver of the ambulance, Tara Babu Sha.
The police has registered a case for causing death due to negligence, impersonation and cheating. Investigations are on, the police said. The two accused were produced in court on Friday.
This is not the first such incident in West Bengal. In June, 2017, seven doctors were arrested from major hospitals in Kolkata for practicing without a legitimate degree.
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, who is also the state's health minister, had passed the Clinical Establishments (Registration, Regulation and Transparency) Bill in 2017 after a crackdown on private hospitals in West Bengal.