Calcutta High Court division bench of acting chief justice Nishita Mhatre and Tapobrata Chakrabarty yesterday allowed application filed by PBT president, Dr. Kunal Saha, granting him permission to argue in person in the PIL filed by Dr. Saha challenging inclusion of disgraced Dr. Sukumar Mukherjee in the newly formed Health Commission (framed under Clinical Establishment Act, 2017) to judge complaints of “medical negligence” against private doctors/hospitals in the state. Dr. Mukherjee was found guilty for gross medical negligence causing death of Dr. Saha’s wife, Anuradha Saha, by the Supreme Court of India that also slapped Dr. Mukherjee (and some other doctors and AMRI hospital in Kolkata) with a compensation of Rs. 11.5 crore, highest ever in Indian medical history. The Apex Court not only held Dr. Mukherjee as a negligent doctor, it also severely criticized his unethical behavior and dubbed him as “unbecoming of a doctor” and a doctor who has brought “great disrespect to his (medical) profession”.
Dr. Saha traveled to Kolkata in July, 2017 to lodge the PIL against Mamata Banerjee government in West Bengal for their deliberate attempt to promote a tainted doctor (Dr. Mukherjee) that also undermined the sanctity of the Supreme Court in the eyes of the public at large in clear violation of Article 144 of Indian Constitution. But after physically appearing before the High Court over a period of almost two months, the PIL was adjourned several times and Dr. Saha had to return to his permanent residence and place of work in USA before which he filed an application to grant live videoconferencing from USA to allow him to argue in person for the ends of justice. The Calcutta HC allowed his application yesterday and directed that further hearings in this important PIL will be held after puja vacation through videoconferencing so that Dr. Saha may participate in the court proceedings from USA. Supreme Court has recently said that all courts should try to utilize modern technologies including live videoconferencing to promote better and easier access to find justice.