As many as 12 people from Rajapalayam submitted a petition to the Virudhunagar Superintendent of Police requesting him to take action against a doctor of a private hospital who allegedly swindled Rs 1 crore from them assuring them of babies using the test tube method.
R Manivannan, one of the complainants, said that he, like many other couples, had approached Karpagavriksha at Ashok Hospital in Rajapalayam after seeing an advertisement in periodicals.
During consultation, the doctor, Uma Maheshwari, spoke softly and gave an assurance that pregnancy could be induced for patients through test tube method. Manivannan said that during the consultation, she claimed that the method had been successfully used on more than 10 couples.
“Believing the doctor’s assurance, people get admitted to the hospital and undergo treatment. During the admission, the people are asked to pay Rs 1.5 lakh and later up to Rs 4 lakh is being collected in the name of tablets and injections,” said Manivannan. Most of the people approaching the hospital belong to the middle class and for money through loans.
The doctor did not issue a bill for the amount paid, he pointed out. As days passed, people grew suspicious and questioned the doctor. But she would simply reply that the patient was pregnant, Manivannan added.
Gradually, the patients grew suspicious and went for a second opinion that confirmed otherwise. When they confronted the doctor, she reportedly threatened them and asked them to go somewhere else for treatment.
Manivannan said that till August 20, around 30 people had undergone treatment and the doctor had collected over Rs 1 crore from them.
A patient, requesting anonymity, said, “I underwent treatment in the hospital for a month during which I had to take many pills a day. My legs started to swell and I can’t even walk.”
On Monday, 12 people filed a complaint against the doctor. The woman said despite the complaint, the hospital continued to advertise about the procedure.