Patients Suffer As Ambulances Forced to Crawl
Hundreds of patients, including some emergency cases, were trapped in the gridlock that choked central Delhi roads following Baba Ramdev's detention. Those visiting Lok Nayak Hospital and G B Pant Hospital — facilities which jointly cater to more than 8,000 patients daily — were the worst affected.
Sakina Abid, who suffered a knee injury in a road accident, said it took her more than an hour to reach Lok Nayak Hospital from Daryaganj . "For almost an hour, our vehicle inch-byinch and we couldn't reach the hospital. Traffic was diverted to Bahadur Shah Zafar Marg from the Delhi Gate intersection. How can the police do such mindless planning?" said Sakina (36), a resident of Walled City.
Though doctors said that no casualty could be linked to the traffic jam, they admitted that most patients had problems in reaching the two hospitals. "All roads surrounding the hospital area were choc-a-bloc with traffic and supporters of Baba Ramdev in the afternoon. Since ambulances were stuck in the chaos, people from nearby localities brought patients on rickshaws or carried them to casualty wards. It was horrible ," said a senior doctor at Lok Nayak Hospital.
Authorities at G B Pant Hospital said that the hospital services remained unaffected. "The traffic congestion didn't hamper services. Patients who managed to reach were attended to immediately," said a senior official.
Pandemonium prevailed as ambulances couldn't even go out from hospitals. "My mother was admitted at Sanjeevan hospital but we had to shift her to Sir Ganga Ram Hospital. The ambulance was stuck in traffic jam for more than an hour. So many patients were put at risk for the sake of one man. Anybody could have died and authorities would have just passed the buck," said Fakhra Siddique (49) a housewife.
She added that police should have made arrangements for transferring patients to hospitals . "How could they let an arterial road leading to two major hospitals get blocked by protesters? They should have made some alternate arrangement to maintain traffic flow in the area," said Madhvi Mahendru, whose father is admitted at GB Pant Hospital.
Hospital authorities said that protests at Ramlila Maidan often trigger snarls in the area.
* Author: TNN
* News story courtesy: TNN
* Image courtesy: © Thinkstock photos/ Getty Images