Pathanamthitta Police arrested ambulance driver for raping COVID-19 patient

Praveen Samuel
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Pathanamthitta: A young woman aged 19 who was tested positive for COVID-19 was being shifted to the hospital in an ambulance but before she was dropped at the hospital by the ambulance she was raped by the ambulance driver during the late hours of Saturday night in Kerala’s Pathanamthitta district.

After the Police got the information about the incident they tracked down the ambulance driver and arrested him. The accused was identified as Noufal, and the police said that he has a case of attempted murder pending against him since 2019. The Police also said that the accused driver had not obtained the mandatory clearance certificate before joining as a driver with the state health department’s ambulance service, which is operated by GVK EMRI Emergency Management Services. Pathanamthitta.

Superintendent of Police Mr. K G Simon IPS said the ambulance driver picked up the victim and another woman aged 40 years who is a COVID-19 from Adoor. The two patients were to be dropped at different hospitals which are at different locations. While the 19-year-old patient was to be admitted to a COVID First Time Treatment Centre at Pandalam, the other woman was to be taken to a COVID center in Aranmula. Even though Pandalam is on the way to Aranmula from Adoor, the driver went directly to Aranmula, dropped the 40-year-old woman there, and then set off to Pandalam with the 19-year-old. On his way, the driver allegedly drove the ambulance to a deserted place and raped her, before taking her to the COVID center.

The Police said that the driver apologized to her before dropping her off and told her not to speak about the incident. Police added saying that the woman recorded the conversation and informed the hospital staff, leading to the driver’s arrest. The SP said the condition of the young woman is stable.

The GVK EMRI said the driver has been terminated from service and a police complaint has been filed against him. The GPS of the ambulance has been handed over to the police. The accused driver, Noufal, had not obtained a police clearance certificate while joining duty but he had submitted a written undertaking that he would soon obtain a clearance certificate, based on which he was hired. All drivers have now been asked to submit clearance certificates against the backdrop of this incident.

 

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