In a landmark judgment that may have major implications for countless victims of medical negligence seeking justice after losing their loved one to wrong treatment, Justice Sabyasachi Bhattacharyya of Calcutta High Court allowed a writ petition filed by PBT president, Dr. Kunal Saha, holding that Dr. Saha, who has been appearing to argue “medical negligence” cases on behalf of the victims for the past many years, has “fundamental right” to plead other victims’ cases before the consumer courts. The High Court has held that although a medical doctor and not a registered advocate, Dr. Saha clearly has “the qualifications” to argue for the victims of medical negligence as stipulated under the Consumer Forum’s Regulations, 2014 as he has been pleading, for free, many cases without any for the victims and other healthcare PILs in consumer and other High Courts and Supreme Court for the past many years.
The writ petition was filed by PBT and Dr. Saha in 2019 against the West Bengal State Consumer Forum and it’s president after Dr. Saha was stopped from arguing for a victim of alleged medical negligence and he was also physically harassed by bunch of other advocates who practice in the consumer court. Dr. Saha also lodged a report with the local police and a separate criminal case is still ongoing for this incidence in Kolkata against the heckling advocates including advocate Mr. Utpal Roychowdhury. Ironically, lawyers in the National Consumer Forums (NCDRC) have also repeatedly objecting against Dr. Saha’s appearance on behalf of victims of medical negligence. PBT and Dr. Saha have been striving hard with selfless dedication to bring accountability to the healthcare delivery system and to help the hapless victims of medical negligence across India ever since Dr. Saha’s wife, Anuradha Saha, died in the most incomprehensible fashion due to gross medical negligence by several so-called “eminent” Kolkata doctors including Dr. Sukumar Mukherjee (a close medical advisor of Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee) during a social visit to India in 1998 (See below the Calcutta HC judgment passed on February 25, 2021).