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Why did Hakim Sheikh file a case in the court?

Last updated date: 18th Jun 2024
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> Hakim Sheik was one of the members of the Paschim Banga Khet Mazdoor Samity (PBKMS).
> He fell down from a running train accidentally and suffered severe head injuries.

Complete answer:
Hakim Sheik was a member of the Paschim Banga Khet Mazdoor Samity (PBKMS), an organisation of farmers in West Bengal. In 1992, while travelling, one evening, he fell down from a running train accidentally and suffered severe head injuries.

Hakim Sheik registered a case in the court because of the unresponsive attitude of several government hospitals that declined his admission in the hospital, even though he required immediate attention.

He faced the following problem:
> When taken to a government hospital in Kolkata, he was refused admission as there were no spare beds in the hospital.
> Another hospital did not admit him as they did not have the facility or the specialised doctors necessary for his treatment.
> He spent 14 hours in a critical state and nearly eight various government hospitals refused to admit him.
> Ultimately, he was forced to be admitted in a private hospital and had to pay hefty charges for the same.
> Hakim Sheikh was quite angry at being left untreated and to change the conditions in government hospitals he and PBKMS filed a case in court.

What did the court say in this case?
> According to the Court, the problems that Hakim Sheik had to face could have cost him his life. If a person cannot be provided timely medical treatment by a hospital, it means that the protection of life is not being given.
> The Court also said that it was the responsibility of the government to provide the required health services, including treatment in emergency situations. The duty of providing the necessary treatment must be fulfilled by the hospitals and medical staff.
> The Court asked the State Government to give Hakim Sheik the money that he had spent on his treatment, as he was denied treatment at various government hospitals.

According to our Constitution, it is the primary duty of the government to ensure people’s welfare and provide them with health care facilities. The Constitution of India not only provides for the health care of the people but also directs the state to take measures to improve people’s healthcare condition.