A 14-year-old gang rape victim had to visit three community health centres (CHC) before she could find a gynaecologist at a government hospital to conduct a medical test that would prove the rape. She is the daughter of a grocer of Lapani village in Kadana taluka, Panchmahals district. In the complaint filed by her father at Kadana police station, it is stated that on Thursday she was abducted by one Javed Qureshi and his friend on a bike and taken to a deserted place near Tatroli bridge on the outskirts of Antalwada village (also in Kadana taluka).
There she was raped by the duo who later abandoned her in a deserted place. She was found unconscious by her brother on Thursday afternoon. When she regained consciousness, she told her family members about the incident.
After her father lodged a police complaint, she was referred to Santrampur CHC for a medical test. The victim’s family took her to Santrampur CHC, then to Kadana CHC and then to Godhra civil hospital. None of these had a gynaecologist to conduct the required medical test. Then she was taken to SSG Hospital in Vadodara where a gynaecologist finally conducted the medical test and confirmed the rape. The victim, who was raped on Thursday, could substantiate her allegation only on Friday afternoon at the SSG Hospital, 24 hours after the incident.
No policeman had accompanied her when she was referred to the health centre after the police complaint. Talking to DNA over phone from Santrampur, Dr BR Patidar, medical officer of Santrampur CHC, said that the girl was brought in an 108-ambulance by her parents without any policemen.
“She was brought here but as there is no gynaecologist in this hospital, we had to refer her to Kadana CHC,” Patidar added. Other sources in the Santrampur hospital said that she had received primary treatment there.
However, as there is no gynaecologist even at Kadana CHC, she was referred to Godhra civil hospital. But the hapless family’s quest for a medical test did not end there as the Godhra hospital too does not have a gynaecologist.
The girl and her family members spent more than 20 hours visiting these hospitals. “Finally, she was taken to SSG Hospital where she was examined by a gynaecologist,” a relative of the girl said. The gang rape victim was examined 24 hours after the crime.
Principal secretary, Health and Family Welfare Department, Rajesh Kishore, said that he was not aware of the incident. “But I will check and ensure that necessary measures are taken,” he said.
Newly-elected Congress MLA from Santrampur, Gendal Damor, told DNA over phone that instead of sending the girl from one place to other, a gynaecologist could have been called to Kadana hospital and her medical test conducted. “But the hospitals had avoided taking responsibility,” he said. Damor had to intervene and talk to the doctors at Santrampur hospital to ensure that she was treated for her injuries.