CIAA raids Bharatpur Corona Hospital; Staff caught on camera stealing equipment

Chitwan, April 28

A team from Hetauda office of the Commission for the Investigation of Abuse of Authority raided Bharatpur Corona Special Hospital today.

The anti-graft body raided the hospital after CCTV footage showed hospital staff stealing medical equipment from the health facility.

The team led by CIAA Hetauda  Chief Shiv Kumar Karki seized documents from the hospital. “We are in the preliminary phase of investigation,” said Karki. He suspects financial anomalies at the hospital.

Bagmati provincial government had provided Rs 10 million to make the hospital operational. Medical equipment were brought from private and government hospitals to the corona hospital. It is learnt that medical equipment and materials were procured randomly without following even the basic procedures of procurement.

Irregularities were suspected after theft involving hospital staff was caught on CCTV.

Following the raid, Bharatpur Corona Control Taskforce formed a probe committee to investigate the incident. Raju Poudel, coordinator of the probe committee, however, resigned before the committee could start functioning, alleging political interference. Bharatpur Metropolitan City had established the hospital to treat COVID-19 patients.

The CCTV footage shows Bharatpur metropolis accountant Phadindra Khanal, Bharatpur Hospital’s employee Sanjay Baral and Bharatpur metropolis Health Department Officer Surya Tiwari taking the equipment and materials from the hospital’s store room at night. They face theft charge.

A version of this article appears in e-paper on April 29, 2020, of The Himalayan Times.