STATESMAN NEWS SERVICE
Bhubaneswar, 3 September
The National Commission for Women has issued a notice to the superintendent of SCB medical college and hospital, Cuttack for alleged ‘non-cooperation’ of the medical institution in probing the alleged gangrape and stabbing of a girl.
Alleging that the authorities’ action amounted to “obstruction of justice”, the Commission directed the superintendent to appear before its two-member inquiry committee in Bhubaneswar tomorrow.
“The notice has been issued under section 10(4) sub-clause (a) of National Commission for Women Act, 1990. The superintendent is asked to appear before the committee and reply to the charges. If he fails to comply with the order in the notice, a summon will be issued directing him to appear before the Commission in New Delhi,” said Ms Manasi Pradhan, a member of the NCW-appointed committee to inquire into the atrocity on the girl at Khandapara in Nayagarh district.
She alleged that though a detailed itinerary of the inquiry committee was sent to the state government beforehand including the scheduled visit to SCB medical college and hospital on 30 August, none of the doctors treating the victim were present.
“When we called for the medical superintendent to arrive with the medical reports of the victim, he refused to comply with the order,” she said.
The committee, comprising Ms Pradhan and Ms Hemlata Kheria, has been on an official tour to Odisha from 29 August in connection with the inquiry. The committee had expressed interest to visit SCBMCH as the girl was undergoing treatment in a critical condition there.
“It (the callousness of the medical college authorities) is indeed a very grievous matter. As per section 10(4) of National Commission for Women Act, 1990, the NCW inquiry committee is deemed to be a judicial court and is empowered to enforce the attendance of any person from any part of India and to requisition any public record from any court or office,” Ms Pradhan noted.