Death of an IITian
Update: New Dean of Student Affairs and Chairman of B.C.Roy Technology Hospital appointed at IIT-Kgp.
I'm publishing this from a small cyber-cafe outside the IIT-campus, since the internet/LAN has been completely shut down in the campus, which you can further read why?
Rohit Kumar, a 3rd year undergraduate student of Electrical Engineering at IIT Kharagpur died this morning due to lack of basic medical facilities at B.C. Roy "Hospital", the civic IIT-run hospital responsible for providing healthcare facilities to IIT-Kharagpur campus residents, which includes students, faculty members, staff and other employees.
Rohit complained of a headache on Saturday evening after a basketball match. He visited B.C.Roy Hospital, no confirmation of the occurrence there is available. During the course of the night his condition worsened and the next morning he again visited the hospital with excruciating pain. He was asked to go back after being prescribed painkillers. While going back to his Hostel, he collapsed and hit his head on the cowtrap. He was rushed back to the hospital, where he was told to wait for the Doctor to arrive in "five minutes". After three hours of "five minutes", the Doctor arrived but refused to touch him. He was referred to Apollo Hospital, Kolkata since he required treatment by a neurologist. He was sent in an ambulance also containing, besides the driver, a pharmacist and two of his friends, but no trained paramedic. Considering the profuse bleeding and worsening condition, they decided to go for Medinipur Hospital instead. He was declared 'brought dead' at Medinipur Hospital.
B.C.Roy has had a history of medical negligence, with several serious medical blunders taking place frequently, and any critical case being needed to rushed as far as Kolkata, despite the administration's claim of developing it into a "Multi-speciality medical research centre", whereas, ironically, not a single paisa has been spent in this regard. No other medical facility is available on the 2100 acre campus, while the strength of students and need for medical care is growing multi-fold every year.
Earlier, the campus newspaper, Scholar's Avenue, had been "banned" for 6 months for publishing an investigative report on the sorry state of the hospital.
Outraged students assembled outside the Director's bungalow aiming for a silent protest. However, the Director refused to attend to the students, not ready to acknowledge the problem with IIT-Kgp's medical facilities. In addition to this he was ignorant of the details of the whole incident. This lead to greater outrage and more than 2000 students gheraoed the residence.
Finally making an appearance on the balcony of the residence he expressed his SYMPATHY and appreciated that we had all gathered for the cause but promised no action. It was demanded that he answer the questions put up by the protesting students. He eventually came out with security where he made blunt promises like suspending the doctor and registering a police case against the "CULPRIT" making it evident that he was trying to laugh off the matter. This caused further unrest after which he slunk away into his house. Exasperated students aggressively demanded the director's resignation since the life of every student is his responsibility and he has not addressed to the much obvious problem even after it has been blatantly pointed out to him many a times in open house discussions with students earlier, as recent as one month ago.
What is even more amusing are the loose comments that the authorities repeatedly made - the Deputy Director said "Whats the big deal..."
For further info, please visit IIT Kgp's campus newspaper. Also see updates on the health of another victim, Gaurav Tomar, currently in ICU.