BENGALURU: While the Karnataka Government is continuously setting testing targets to public health centres, two employees of a PHC in Kodigehalli were caught on video faking RTPCR Covid swab samples. After the video went viral, BBMP suspended the Chief Medical Officer of the PHC and also filed a police case against the duo.
One of the culprits, Nagaraj was working at a private hospital and had lost job during the lockdown. He was trained to be a swab collector and appointed at Kodigehalli PHC on a contract basis. In the video, Nagaraj and Hemanth are seen opening the test kits and the buds to collect the samples and marking them as tests being done. The accused were said to be aware of the video being shot, allegedly by ASHA workers Kusuma, Prema and Padma.
Dr Premanand B R, Chief Medical Officer of the PHC who has since been suspended, filed the complaint at Kodigehalli police station. His complaint stated, “The duo were hired on a contract basis and were working as Covid19 employees for the last 10 months. We saw the video of the duo faking the swab tests and entering it as tests done on patients. They have done this when I wasn’t present in the hospital.”
A senior police officer said, “The duo have not just cheated the government but also committed a breach of criminal trust by falsifying information. We have booked them under Sections 177 and 408 of IPC.”
Health Commissioner Dr K V Thrilok Chandra said the BBMP is conducting an investigation on all the other swabs collected at the PHC.
“We will also conduct surprise raids and visit other PHCs,” he added. The PHC had a testing target of 650 samples a day. Recently, 12 samples from the centre were neither positive nor negative for Covid.