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Mrunal Manmay Dash

Balasore: If the existing issues in Odisha's healthcare service delivery were not enough, a video purportedly showing a government-run 108 ambulance driver asking for bribe from the relative of a patient is doing rounds in the social media raising serious questions on CM Naveen’s anti-corruption stand.

The video was reportedly shot at Balasore District Headquarters Hospital (DHH) by Sanjit Das, a relative of a patient from Bhogarai, who was referred to SCB Medical College and Hospital (SCBMCH) in Cuttack for further treatment.

The video shows Sanjit pleading with one of the staff of a 108 ambulance who reportedly demanded Rs 1000 as bribe to ferry the patient to Cuttack. Sanjit could be heard negotiating with the staff and finally settling for a bribe of Rs.600.

The driver of the ambulance even reportedly said that other private ambulances charge Rs 3,500 to Rs 4,000, so comparatively, it is cheaper.

On being asked about the incident, Dr. Sudhir Ghose, Superintendent of Balasore DHH said, “The man who is asking for bribe can be seen in the video. The person should furnish a written complaint mentioning all the details of the incident. We will take action after a thorough enquiry.”

No comments have been received from the 108 Ambulance service providers.

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