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Permanent Lok Adalat helps woman get back excess amount charged by private hospital

The chairman directed the hospital to return the excess fee to Susila within a week, and based on the directions the hospital returned the amount to Susila recently.

Published: 19th September 2021 03:58 AM  |   Last Updated: 19th September 2021 03:58 AM   |  A+A-

Lok Adalat Chairman AKK Rajini, in the presence of DLSA Secy V Deepa handed over the excess amount to Susila (name changed) at the court premises recently | express

Express News Service

MADURAI: Susila’s (name changed) efforts to harness the power of the Permanent Lok Adalat in Madurai to tide over the Covid-19-induced misery bore fruit when the widow got Rs 2 lakh from a private hospital that charged exorbitantly for her husband’s Covid-19 treatment.

She lost their breadwinner -- her husband -- to Covid-19 at a private hospital in Madurai on June 18 this year. With the family’s savings depleted due to the hospital bills, the homemaker’s only ray of hope to tide her over for a few months was to at least get back the excess amount collected by the hospital for her husband’s treatment. 

However, she was neither aware of the legal procedure to obtain the amount nor was she well enough to hire a lawyer. Hence, a month after her husband’s death, Susila petitioned the Permanent Lok Adalat in Madurai seeking its intervention in getting the amount from the hospital.  Madurai Permanent Lok Adalat Chairman/ District Judge AKK Rajini heard her petition and sent notice to hospital authorities.

“Since the hospital management claimed no excess amount was charged, the chairman directed the Joint Director of Health Services to reply as to the correct bill amount which the hospital is entitled to receive for its services based on government norms. Through the reply, it was found that the hospital collected `2.03 lakh in excess from Susila,” sources from the court said.

The chairman directed the hospital to return the excess fee to Susila within a week, and based on the directions the hospital returned the amount to Susila recently.  Susila, along with her daughter, received the amount in the presence of Chairman Rajini and District Legal Services Authority (DLSA) Secretary V Deepa. According to the National Legal Services Authority website, Permanent Lok Adalats were set up as permanent bodies with a chairman and two members for providing a compulsory pre-litigative mechanism for conciliation and settlement of cases relating to public utility services like transport, postal, telegraph etc.



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