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Supreme Court Issues Notice to AMRI Hospital and Kolkata Doctors For Enhancement of Compensation in Anuradha Death Case

Supreme Court division bench of Justices Mr. B.S. Chauhan and Mr. J.S. Khehar has issued notice today to AMRI Hospital and three top Kolkata doctors (Sukumar Mukherjee, Baidyanath Halder and Balaram Prasad) to the appeal filed by PBT president Dr. Kunal Saha seeking enhancement of the Rs. 1.7 crore compensation awarded by the National Consumer Forum (NCDRC) for the wrongful death of Dr. Saha’s wife and USA-based child psychologist, Anuradha Saha.  Anuradha died during a social visit to India in 1998 from gross medical negligence by the three convicted doctors and Dr. Abani Roychowdhury, who passed away soon after the Apex Court held these doctors and AMRI hospital in Kolkata responsible for Anuradha’s death.  While the award of Rs. 1.7 crore is highest in Indian medico-legal history, Dr. Saha has claimed in his appeal before the Supreme Court that this was a travesty of justice since he had spent far more than than the compensation amount to fight this long-drawn legal battle for 14 years and NCDRC had dismissed more than 98% of the total legitimate claim made by Dr. Saha without providing any cogent reason (see below copy of Dr. Saha’s appeal in SC).  The Apex Court today also refused to grant any “stay” to the NCDRC order as sought by the guilty doctors who now must pay the compensation imposed by NCDRC last October.  Dr. Saha has already filed a petition before NCDRC seeking imprisonment of the convicted doctors/AMRI hospital for non-payment of the compensation as allowed under Section 27 of the Consumer Protection Act, 1985.  Dr. Saha has already vouched that the entire compensation (except his personal legal expenses) from this battle will be donated for promotion of healthcare and poor Indian children in India.  Enhancement of the highest ever compensation by the Supreme Court in this matter may pave the way for adequate compensation for all victims of “medical negligence” in India.

SC Appeal (Jan 12, 2012)

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