LAHORE: It’s been a week since Iftikhar Hussain’s hand was broken during a clash, but he is still going from pillar to post to get an FIR registered against the incident.
However, obtaining a medical report, which is necessary to file the case, is proving almost as painful as his injury. Iftikhar got into a scuffle over the demolition of a wall on Kassisay Road, Tibba Panj Pir and Garhi Mumberan in South Punjab. It was being demolished to construct a small alleyway.
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The victim’s brother Abrar Hussain says such delays in justice were common in South Punjab. “You cannot get justice until you give a bribe and it’s all due to the poor than a culture and sorry state of affairs in government departments. Police are unwilling to register my brother’s case and doctors are reluctant to provide medical reports.”
After the fight, the 35-year-old man suffered serious injuries and was rushed to Pindi Bhattiyan Taluqa Hospital where doctors conducted an initial medical examination and referred him to the Allied hospital in Faisalabad for other tests, including radiology,” he recalls.
“The incident occurred a week ago and neither are we able to get the medical reports of Iftikhar and nor is the police registering a case against the accused who broke my brother’s hand,” he adds. “That’s how the system works in rural areas of the province.”
According to SHO Malik Ghulam Ahmed, police cannot register a case against the accused until medical reports are submitted.
The SHO agreed that police in rural areas do face difficulties during the course of investigations and there is a need to improve the system. “It’s a pity that it has been a week and we are still waiting for the medial reports.” Pindi Bhattiyan Taluqa Hospital Medical Superintendent Dr Younus Khokar told The Express Tribune that the issue came to his knowledge three days ago. However, the complete report could not be prepared due to the absence of a medico-legal officer at the hospital.
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“However, the initial report has already been prepared and an MLO is expected to join the hospital in the next couple of days so we can submit the report to the police,” says Dr Younus. These days, the hospital is short-staffed and it’s not possible to submit the reports without the help of the MLO.”
The MS realises that justice is being delayed, but assures the medics are trying their best despite all the issues. “The health department is willing to make appointments against the vacant posts of an MLO and other,” he says.
Dr Shahid Imran, who is a relative of the complainant, stresses that this is a minor issue and justice should be provided immediately. “Just delayed is justice denied.”
Published in The Express Tribune, July 8th, 2017.