Bengaluru: BBMP bed scam has claimed many lives, says Tejasvi Surya | Bengaluru News – Times of India
He slammed BBMP’s Covid-19 management and demanded strict action against civic officials involved in the scam
BENGALURU: As many as 4,065 hospital beds booked in the name of Covid-19 patients have been diverted in return for bribes in the past week, Bengaluru South MP Tejasvi Surya said on Tuesday, alleging a massive racket in bed allotment.
He slammed BBMP’s Covid-19 management and demanded strict action against civic officials involved in the scam.
Surya, who is BJP youth wing’s national president, made the statement at a press conference. City BJP MLAs Ravi Subramanya, Satish Reddy and Uday Garudachar were present with him. The claims emerged on the day TOI published the report ‘Bribe-for-bed claims: BBMP orders probe’.
Surya alleged that some BBMP officials, hospital staffers and people sitting inside zonal war rooms were involved. “My party may be in administration, but we cannot sit quietly looking at this level of corruption that has led to many deaths. I apologise to the families of people who died because of this unholy nexus. We cannot bring back those who have died, but we want to prevent more people from dying,” he said.
Explaining the scam, Surya said that beds were booked in the name of asymptomatic patients in home isolation. “After the bed is booked, if the patient doesn’t get admitted in 12 hours, it is automatically unblocked for other patients. In this 12-hour window, agents contact patients looking for admission and divert the beds to them. We contacted multiple people in whose names beds were blocked and found that they had recovered long back. They were not aware that beds were booked in their name,” he said. Even ICU and ventilator ones were assigned to those willing to pay a bribe.
Revealing another tactic, Surya said: “A bed gets vacant at midnight, and it is blocked in the next two minutes. And in the next 30 seconds, the patient gets admitted there. How can a patient reach the place in 30 seconds?”
He claimed there were instances where a single patient’s BU number was used to book beds. “A person was in home isolation. But in the war room, they had booked beds in 12 hospitals in 12 days using the same BU number. All these things happened 20 days after the patient’s recovery,” he said.
Surya added that BBMP had failed to use technology. “There are two software programs. On one, calls are taken to check the details. The person collecting the information passes it on to another person, who books it (bed) on the second program. There is no integration between the programs, and it shows the shoddy job of BBMP. We live in the IT capital,” he said.
Surya alleged another set of people in BBMP was reserving beds for influential people such as ministers, MLAs and MPs. BBMP chief commissioner Gaurav Gupta said a team of officials was looking into the matter and would submit a report on Wednesday. “I have directed them to fix issues parallelly. Any glitches that are misused will be fixed. Action will be taken against anyone who indulged in fraudulent activities,” he added.