HIV woman returns to hospital after rape-accused arrested

August 2nd, 2009

CHANDIGARH - Almost two years after an HIV-positive woman was allegedly sexually abused by staff members of a leading hospital and the state AIDS control society, the victim has resumed treatment at the facility following the arrest of the two accused.

According to the police, accused James, a senior technician of the Postgraduate Institute of Medical Education and Research (PGIMER), Chandigarh and Nek Ram, a counsellor with Chandigarh AIDS Control Society were arrested Friday.

A case of rape has been registered against the accused.

Following their arrest, the victim has mustered the courage to go back to the PGIMER to continue her treatment.

“I was very afraid of going to PGIMER for treatment as the family members of James and Nek Ram had given me life threats. But after their arrest, I went there yesterday to continue my treatment,” said Monica (name changed), the victim, here Sunday.

“However, I could not meet the doctor and they have told me to come again on Monday,” she added.

However, a city-based NGO ‘Chandigarh Network of Positive People’ has come to the aid of the victim.

Pooja Thakur, president of the NGO, told IANS: “We are very happy and this would act as an example and would deter other people from exploiting HIV patients. We will take care of the victim and make sure that her treatment will be started at PGIMER.”

The police investigation revealed that the accused, James and Nek Ram had sought sexual favours from the victim, in lieu of giving her expensive medicines free of cost.

They started visiting her house at a slum rehabilitation colony here in Chandigarh. The accused knew that the woman was HIV positive and they used condoms while having intercourse with her.

However, PGIMER authorities have decided to deal strictly with the accused.

“We have issued instructions for appropriate departmental action against the PGI staffer arrested by the police. We will not allow such things in our institute and we will set things right,” said K.K. Talwar, director of PGIMER, here Sunday.

Filed under HIV, Medicine, News

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