KOLKATA: In a major faux pas in dissemination of information before verification on the part of Kolkata Police and city administration, medical waste of gauge, cotton and diapers wrapped in 14 plastic packets found at a construction site in south Kolkata on Sunday were mistaken to be human fetuses, causing massive hue and cry across the nation.
The 14 plastic-wrapped packets were found dumped at the centre of an empty land at 214, Raja Rammohan Roy Road at Haridevpur locality in southern Kolkata when being cleaned by labourers for a real estate project on Sunday. The labourers informed Haridevpur police station about the packets who prima facie concluded that they were 14 human fetuses.
Kolkata Mayor Sovan Chatterjee and police commissioner Rajiv Kumar visited the area and initiated a probe. The Mayor first revealed the recovery of 'fetuses' to the media. The plastic-wrapped 'fetuses' were taken to M R Bangur super-specialty hospital in Tollygunge for post-mortem.
However, upon opening the packets and testing them medically, doctors did not find any human tissues in the packets and concluded that they were medical waste of gauge and cotton.
"No human tissues have been found in the packets when it was opened by doctors. Some dry ice was found. Prima facie it seems to be medical waste of gauge and cotton. An examination is on for exact nature of the material. We can be 100 per cent sure only after forensic tests on the objects in the packets," said deputy commissioner (southwest) Nilanjan Biswas in a statement around 7.30 pm on Sunday.
Around an hour before his 'correctional' statement, Biswas had held a press conference at Haridevpur police station where he said: "Prima facie it seems pre-matured fetuses were thrown from outside into the compound. However, the condition of the fetuses can be known only after unwrapping them from plastic during post-mortem. We cannot tell now whether they were decomposed or not."
However, the doctors did not find any human tissue in the packets as a result of which post mortem would not be conducted on the 14 packets and no case would be initiated.