HYDERABAD: V Ramdas, who was returning from to the Thalassemia and Sickle Cell Society in Rajendranagar where his 5-year-old son Naveen had undergone a transfusion, on Saturday, was stopped by the police. His bike was confiscated and its keys were broken.
A video of the same has gone viral on social media. After that, they were slapped with a challan by the Langar Houz Police. Despite showing them ID cards of being thalessemia patients, they were fined under the Disaster Management Act. They ended up becoming one of the many unwitting victims of strict policing during lockdown.
In another similar instance, Syed Houz, who came with his daughter Ameena Begum and donor to the society, said, “I was on my way to the society for my daughter to undergo a blood transfusion. The police stopped us at Hassan Nagar, and despite showing them the thalessemia ID card, they fined me.” Ironically, Cyberabad Police Commissioner VC Sajjanar had himself donated blood to thalessemia patients on Friday, and through a tweet, had urged people to come forward and donate blood.
“We are procuring passes daily for donors or sending our vehicle to bring them to our centre. Today, 30 donors were scheduled to donate blood, but only two could turn up. We urge the government to not delay the relief for these young children with thalassemia by troubling the donors,” said Aleem Baig of Thalassemia Society which caters to 3,000 patients.
The decision of the Telangana police, to strictly crack down on commuters post 10 am, hit Covid-19 relief work in many ways. Several volunteers who have been transporting essentials like home-cooked free food for Covid-19 patients, medicines and other essential equipment, were stopped and slapped with hefty challans under the Disaster Management Act.
Startup CEO booked while carrying O2
Twenty-eight-year-old CEO of startup Rondeyvoo Eurasia, Bharath Veer, was one amongst the many who was booked under the DM Act and asked to pay a challan of `1,000 for carrying an oxygen concentrator among other Covid essentials.
“I run a start-up on Covid-19 essentials and also deal with the e-commerce industry. Since the last 10 days, I have been travelling from my office in Bowenpally and back by taking an e-pass. We get nearly 300-400 Covid-19 orders every day. On Saturday, at 3.30 pm I was stopped at Musheerabad while carrying a 5 litre oxygen concentrator, nearly 200 face masks, 24 cans of oxygen of 6 litre each and various other essentials which were to be given to various customers in my area. However, the police stopped me and penalised me for my relief work,” rued Bharath.
While the police held him up for over 45 minutes, the patient who had placed the urgent order for the concentrator had to look for other sources. “I was forced to travel without an e-pass today (Saturday) because despite applying for it twice, I could not get the clearance. Once, it showed that the pass was pending and the second time I applied, Saturday morning — it said no pass will be issued. Had the police shown this level of strictness when the peak was actually high, we would not be in this situation,” he says.
After outrage, KTR promises respite
Following uproar by the public over the rude behaviour of the police across the State, IT and Industries Minister KT Rama Rao on Saturday said he would discuss it with the DGP. In a Tweet, KTR said, “Received several complaints on police stopping the food delivery services & others in distress. Will discuss with @TelanganaDGP and resolve asap”.