Representational image. | Image Courtesy: New Indian Express
Bhopal: Demanding a death audit of all those who died in Indore due to coronavirus, a judicial probe into the Indore collector’s “mishandling” of the pandemic, manipulation of Covid-19 deaths data, and allowing transportation of pan masala during lockdown, an RTI activist has written a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan.
In his letter, RTI activist Ajay Dubey has alleged that the Indore administration not only undermined law and order during the lockdown but also jeopardised the privacy of 14 lakh residents of the city by hiring an unknown IT company to conduct a COVID-19 survey.
When there are two different Apps -- Union Government-run Aarogya Setu and Sarthak, run by the state government -- to keep track of COVID-19 data and survey, why did the Indore collector promote ‘Indore Covid-19 Survey App’ by a private company, Brain Above InfoSol Private Limited?, Dubey has questioned in the letter. He urged that the district admininstration should come clean on this subject because it's a matter of citizens’ privacy.
In a five-page letter to the PM and the National Human Rights Commission, Dubey also listed out details of alleged unlawful decisions that had been taken by the Indore administration during the lockdown, stating that he had submitted all evidence in this regard.
“First, they hid the death data. The bodies of COVID-19 deceased were not disposed of as per protocol”, he alleged.
“Then Indore collector Manish Singh allowed clinical trial of COVID-19 patients to Patanjali Research Foundation Trust and then transportation of Pan Masala (Gutka) of crores of rupees owned by a businessman to other districts in the lockdown. Later, the Gutka businessman Kishore Wadhwani was caught in tax evasion net of Rs 350 crore by the Directorate General of GST Intelligence (DGGI), Madhya Pradesh.” Dubey alleged.
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Blaming criminal negligence at every step, the letters says “that’s why not only did Indore become the hotspot of the pandemic but also spread it to other districts.”
Citing a case of “criminal negligence”, the letter said the four accused who were arrested for attacking a medical team in Indore and booked under the National Security Act, 1980 were sent to jails of Jabalpur, Rewa and Satna. “Till then there were no COVID-19 cases in jails. But, in the next week, the disease not only spread in these jails but also infected the officials who escorted the accused to the jails”, the letter says.
The RTI activist demanded a judicial probe in the points that he had raised as also a death audit of all COVID-19 patients.
“It’s the right of the common man to know the truth behind all above questions. The Union Government should set up in enquiry and public the report so that truth can prevail.” Dubey added.