PUNE: While 24-year-old Sandhya Sonawane was battling death in Deenanath Mangeshkar Hospital (DMH), her former doctor, Dr Satish Chavan, sought help of a Godman to ward off the evil eye.
However, when Sonawane lost her life on Monday evening, her brother, Mahesh Jagtap, filed a complaint against Dr Chavan with the Maharashtra Andhshradhha Nirmulan Samiti (MANS) and city-based Shiv Sena leader Sachin Taware on Tuesday against the superstitious methods used by the doctor to cure the patient.
Speaking to Sakal Times, Jagtap said that before coming to Deenanath Mangeshkar Hospital (DMH), Sandhya was at Chavan Nursing Home near Swargate.
“She had been unwell for past three-four months. At Chavan Nursing Home, under the guidance of Dr Satish Chavan, she underwent operation around February 20 after she was diagnosed with a lump in her breast. As doctors could not arrest the blood loss, she was shifted to DMH, as Chavan Nursing Home was not equipped to handle the emergency,” noted Jagtap.
However, as she was undergoing treatment at DMH, Dr Chavan visited her frequently. “My sister’s condition was stable, however, there was no improvement. Hence, three to four days before my sister’s demise, Dr Chavan got a godman to ward off the evil eye,” said Jagtap.
Highlighting the issue of superstition, Nandini Jadhav, Secretary, Maharashtra Andhashradhha Nirmulan Samiti (MANS), said a complaint will be filed with the police station. While interacting with mediapersons, the Senior Police Inspector of Alankar police station, Rekha Salunke, said that proper investigation will be conducted in this case after a complaint is filed and appropriate sections of Maharashtra Prevention and Eradication of Human Sacrifice and other Inhuman, Evil and Aghori Practices and Black Magic Act, 2013, will be slapped against the suspect.
A shameful practice
“It is a shame to witness such an incident in a progressive city like Pune. The brother of the victim was very scared and we extend full support to him in every possible way. We are also writing to the concerned police station about getting the complaint filed,” said Jadhav.
Echoing similar sentiments, Shiv Sena leader Sachin Taware said that the victim’s brother had approached them for assistance. “After Jagtap came to us, the relatives of Dr Chavan also threatened us, saying that they are not scared of police action. We feel the loss of the family here and shall stand by them,” said Taware.
DMH administration noted that they were unaware of the godman and use of black magic in their Intensive Care Unit (ICU). This has also highlighted how the security of an ICU is grossly neglected at the esteemed medical facility.
Dr Dhananjay Kelkar, Medical Director, noted that Dr Satish Chavan was not a part of the hospital. “We will be helping the police in their investigations and also provide CCTV footage to trace the godman and Dr Chavan. However, Chavan is not working with us. Our staff and medical practitioners are unaware about this incident,” said Kelkar.
However, it can be spotted in the video of the godman and the Dr Chavan, which went viral, that the ICU staff was present when the ‘black magic’ was performed.
Speaking about this incident, President of Pune Chapter of the Indian Medical Association (IMA), Dr Prakash Marathe, said that the IMA does not support superstition.
CAUSE OF VICTIM’S DEATH
- Mahesh Jagtap, brother of the 24-year-old victim, has said that she underwent surgery at Dr Chavan’s nursing home for lumps in her breast.
- However, Dr Sameer Jog, ICU in-charge of DMH, noted that the patient had a multi-organ failure.
- “She was on dialysis and died because of multi-organ failure. She was also operated for breast lumps three to four times before she came to us,” said Jog.
CHAVAN NURSING HOME SHUT
- The doctor in question, Dr Satish Chavan, has sought police protection after the allegations were made against him.
- His nursing home near Swargate was also shut and police bandobast was seen there. Despite several attempts to contact him, Chavan has not responded to the allegations.
- This closed nursing home has an iron horseshoe hanging on its walls and a Kohla, a fruit from the gourd family, which are both believed traditionally to ward off evil spirits.