Dalit man, who got financial assistance from PMO for kidney transplant, dies on waitlist


A 33-year-old Dalit man, whose kidney transplant had been funded five months ago by the Prime Minister’s office with a deposit of 2.17 lakh in the bank account of the hospital, died on Wednesday morning, still waiting for the surgery.

Hospital authorities at the Lucknow’s Sanjay Gandhi Post Graduate Institute of Medical Sciences (SGPGI) said they were in no position to schedule a surgery for Santosh Kumar over the next eight months.

It is being reported that even BJP leaders from Varanasi and Lucknow were pushing for a surgery appointment to be scheduled for Santosh. The patient’s parents passed away six years ago and he along with his elder sister Rita, used to work to earn for three other siblings.

Rita told Indian Express that doctors had diagnosed kidney failure for both of Santosh’s organs and that he had been undergoing treatment since November 2014. Rita was to be a kidney donor for her brother.

After getting help from the PM’s constituency office in Varanasi, Rita deposited the Rs 2.17 lakh amount in the hospital bank account but the surgery kept on getting postponed.

“But SGPGI doctors kept on postponing the surgery date citing a long list of patients who were waiting for a transplant. They asked us to continue dialysis. I met BJP state president Laxmikant Bajpai in Varanasi, who talked to the SGPGI director on the matter,” Rita told Indian Express.

Although SGPGI director Professor Rakesh Kapoor later suggested conducting the surgery at King George Medical University (KGMU) under the supervision of SGPGI doctors, the date was never finalised.

“But we still kept on waiting for a date. Santosh’s condition deteriorated on Wednesday. I rushed him to BHU hospital, where doctors declared him brought dead. This happened because of the ignorance of politicians and SGPGI administration, who did not understand the seriousness of the medical condition of a common man,” Rita said.

PM’s Lok Sabha constituency in-charge of Varanasi, Shiv Sharan Pathak confirmed that Rita had indeed visited them to seek financial assistance.

“The Prime Minister’s Office had transferred the amount of Rs 2.17 lakh into the bank account of SGPGI for surgery. BJP MLC and Kashi region president Laxman Acharya had assured to pay the rest of the amount from his MLA fund,” Pathak said.