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Pradeep Pattanayak

The Commissionerate Police on Friday busted a racket that was allegedly involved in stealing medical equipment meant for Covid-19 hospital worth crores of rupees and selling them away to private hospitals. 

In this connection, police have arrested six persons who had been allegedly carrying out the clandestine business for a long time. The arrested persons have been identified as owner of Rudra Hospital in Cuttack Dr Arun Acharya, owner of DP Care Hospital Bhubaneswar Pramod Swain, medical equipment supply contractor Manoj Paik, middleman Lingaraj Sahu and security men Shantanu Samal and Rayranjan Biswal. 

The medical equipment worth crores of rupees were reportedly procured for Covid-19 hospitals. They were kept in a government godown. As per the allegations, since the godown was without CCTV surveillance, the accused persons found it easy to steal the equipment.   

It was when equipment like ventilators and ICU monitors were found missing during a recent inspection, the entire episode came to the fore. The police said they are investigating the case to find out involvement of any other persons. 

“We are also probing the financial angle. For this, we have obtained two days remand of two accused,” informed Bhubaneswar DCP Umashankar Dash.

The accused persons in police remand are reportedly medical equipment supply contractor Manoj Paik and middleman Lingaraj Sahu.

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