The Delhi Commission for Women has said that 11 patients have died at the Asha Kiran home for the mentally challenged in just the past two months.
The DCW conducted a surprise inspection over the weekend, in which its chairperson Swati Maliwal was also present. The commission said that the conditions in the home were very bad, there was overcrowding and patients were being made to do the work of the staff. They were being made to sweep, clean clothes, and even massage legs of the staffers.
The DCW found women inmates walking naked along the corridors, despite the fact that the institution has CCTV cameras which are monitored by male staff, reported the Times of India.
The DCW will submit a report to the government about these conditions. It has also issued a notice to the social welfare department secretary, highlighting the need for a separate inquiry committee which will look at complaints against the home.
“Our work is to immediately rectify the situation and build accountability into the system. We need to find out what the staff has been doing in the light of the death of inmates and miserable conditions at the home. I am extremely disturbed with what I have seen and have asked the secretary of the social welfare department for a response to the notice within 72 hours,” Maliwal said.
There was only one ‘House aunty’ to look after 153 residents in a dormitory.
“We saw no wheelchairs were being used. Women and children were crawling on the floor, unattended, while going to the toilets. There is no clinical psychologist at the home and only one psychiatrist visits the place twice a week for a few hours. Several posts of doctors are also vacant.”
The Delhi BJP president, Manoj Tiwari, has demanded that the Deputy Chief Minister, Manish Sisodia, who is responsible for the social welfare department, resign.
“The Delhi government is responsible for the death of 11 innocent inmates of Asha Kiran and it is now trying to evade responsibility and mislead the people, Tiwari said.
Meanwhile, the Twitterati has been shouting about Arvind Kejriwal’s ineptitude.
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