Orissa HC Reserves Order On Death Of Tribal Woman & Stillborn Baby For ‘Medical Negligence’

Cuttack: The Orissa High court has reserved its judgment in the case of death of tribal woman Martha Sabar and her stillborn baby allegedly due to medical negligence.

The two-judge bench of Chief Justice S Muralidhar and Justice Murahari Sri Raman on Thursday closed the hearing of the case and reserved the judgement after taking note of the report of the State Commission for Women (SCW) on the matter.

As per the case, Martha Sabar of Deopur village in Gajapati district was admitted at the Darabangha primary health centre (PHC) and later shifted to DHH in Paralakhemundi where she died on March 25, 2015.

Her father-in-law Sambara Sabar filed a petition in the high court seeking appropriate action against the medical authorities for negligence and compensation on June 30, 2015. The petition also sought constitution of Maternal Death Review Board for effective implementation of the Janani Surakshya Yojana (JSY).  Advocate Omkar Devdas appeared in the court on behalf of the petitioner.

On May 17, the High Court had ordered a probe into it by the State Commission for Women (SCW).

In the report, the SCW had concluded that Martha, who lost her baby due to intrauterine death, died of gross medical negligence. “It is evident from medical records that Martha was not kept under care and standard protocol was not maintained,” TOI quoted the report as stating.

“After in-depth consideration of oral and documentary evidence, the inquiry team is of the view that Martha died due to combined negligence of doctors on duty at Darabhangha PHC and DHH,” the report said.

While recommending penalty to the erring doctors of the PHC and the DHH, the SCW said the High Court should take note that the husband of the deceased is an irresponsible person and a habitual drunkard.

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