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Pune crash: Doctor paid Rs 3 lakh to change teen’s blood samples

Mangalore Today News Network

Pune, May 28, 2024: One of the two doctors arrested for tampering with evidence and changing blood samples of the Pune teen who crashed his Porsche car and killed two IT professionals, allegedly received Rs 3 lakh from a staffer of the Sassoon General Hospital. The minor was taken to the hospital for medical tests after the fatal accident on May 19.



The staffer, identified as Atul Ghatkamble, was arrested on Monday, just hours after Dr Ajay Taware, head of the hospital’s Forensic Medicine department, and Dr Shrihari Halnor, the chief medical officer of the state-run hospital were also taken into custody.
The three have been remanded in police custody till May 30.

Of the total amount, the Pune Crime Branch recovered Rs 2.5 lakh from Halnor and the remaining Rs 50,000 from Ghatkamble, who worked under Taware.

However, there was no immediate information on how or where Ghatkamble procured the cash from.

On Monday, a public prosecutor told the court in Pune, which sent the three accused to police custody, that they misused their respective positions for financial gains, and destroyed the evidence of blood samples of the juvenile and replaced them with those of other persons.

He said the police wanted to question the three face-to-face.

The arrest of the two doctors came after it was discovered that the blood samples of the teen driver were switched with those of another person who had not consumed alcohol.

Police said the teen’s original blood sample was disposed of in a dustbin.

The Forensic Science Laboratory (FSL) report showed no alcohol in the first blood sample, which raised suspicions.

Later, a second blood test conducted at a different hospital and DNA tests confirmed the samples were from two different individuals. This led investigators to suspect that the doctors at the Sassoon General Hospital had tampered with the evidence to protect the accused juvenile.

Meanwhile, the Maharashtra government has set up a three-member panel to visit the Sassoon General Hospital on Tuesday in connection to the case.

While announcing the formation of the three-member panel, Medical Education Commissioner Rajiv Nivatkar also directed Dr Vinayak Kale, Dean of the Sassoon General Hospital, to cooperate with the committee in the probe.

Courtesy: India Today

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