Coronavirus Pandemic

India: Covid swabs replaced for staff to show ill, claim leave; 1 arrested

Filed on July 2, 2021 | Last updated on July 2, 2021 at 06.38 am
PTI file photo

The accused used to get money from such employees of the private company.

A ward boy of a government hospital at Khamgaon in Maharashtra's Buldhana district was arrested on Thursday for allegedly replacing the swab samples in the laboratory to facilitate the employees of a private company get positive Covid-19 report so that they could apply for medical leave and claim insurance benefits, the police said.

The accused, Vijay Rakhonde, worked as a contractual employee of the Khamgaon General Hospital, they said.

He was arrested on the basis of a complaint filed by the hospital's resident medical officer Dr Nilesh Tapre, a police official said.

According to the police, some employees of the private company knew that Vijay Rakhonde helps in getting fake Covid-19 reports by changing the swabs.

"The medical officer had come to know that Rakhonde has been indulging in the malpractice of putting the swabs of Covid-19 positive persons in place of the swabs given by the private company's employees so that they can apply for medical leave and claim insurance benefits based on the fake positive report although they had tested negative," the official said.

The accused used to enter the testing lab and replace the swabs. He used to get money from such employees of the private company, he said.

The police have registered an offence against one Chandrakant Umap, an employee of that private company, who had asked the Vijay Rakhonde to arrange four swabs for others, the official added.

Khamgaon police said they suspect that more people might be involved in this case.

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