By Aires Rodrigues

In recent years, almost every patient I have known who has been to Manipal Hospital at Dona Paula has faced a hell of a nightmare. Most of those patients have landed up in the morgue, with their families lumbered with massive and extremely exorbitant bills. For the family of someone already going through the pain of illness, it is added agony to being financially ripped off with very inflated bills. This anguish faced by the family members is heart breaking to have to collect a dead body and paying up that huge bill landing them in a deep financial hole.
Manipal hospital seems to be lacking any Code of ethics. A concern for the well-being of the patient is never there, while they merrily secure and pursue their commercial interests.

The government ought to order an immediate inquiry into the dubious affairs at Manipal Hospital and the probe has to zero in around the main accused Dr. Shekhar Salkar who runs the commercial show there, by claiming that he is a qualified oncologist though he is not one. He neither has a degree nor even a diploma in either Oncology or Oncosurgery.

Last week my 85 year old pious gentleman and close friend from Ribandar escaped from being butchered by Dr Shekhar Salkar who was all set for another five lakh windfall to operate on my friend who had a growth on his intestine. Luckily my friend who timely smelt a rat and the doctor’s devious game plan, hastily sought discharge from the Manipal Hospital within hours of his admission there. Fortunately my friend sought immediate alternate medical advice and is keeping well after being successfully operated elsewhere.
Dr Shekhar Salkar has been grossly misusing his position as Head of Goa BJP's Medical cell to illegally and unethically rake up huge financial benefits for Manipal hospital while also enriching his own pockets. On Dr Shekhar Salkar's trail of scams at the Goa Cricket Association less said the better. But he should not be allowed to inhumanely and immorally gamble with people's lives.

There is abundant documentary evidence to the effect that the politically well-connected Dr Salkar has been unduly interfering and sabotaging the working of Government hospitals as well, only to benefit his Manipal Hospital.
Let us hope that our Health Minister Vishwajit Rane orders a prompt thorough inquiry into the blatant misdeeds and wrongdoings at the Manipal hospital. This financial exploitation of patients cannot be allowed to go on unpunished.
We also need to know as to how that building on free government land which was a Goa Cancer Society hospital landed in the soiled hands of the Manipal Hospital entrepreneurs.

Instead of going to this Manipal Hospital, a patient may be well advised to die in peace somewhere else. At least the family's life savings would not be swallowed by this proven vulture of a hospital. The family will also be saved the financial ordeal and trauma they would have to go through after losing their loved one there, at Dona Paula.

Goa BJP removes state spokesperson Dattaprasad Naik

Panaji, Mar 5 (PTI) Ahead of the civic polls in

Panaji, the Goa BJP on Friday removed its state spokesperson Dattaprasad Naik from the post.

State BJP President Sadanand Shet Tanavade issued an order stating that Naik has been relieved from his post.

While Naik was unavailable for a comment, sources in the party claimed that the removal is a part of an exercise to bring in discipline in the set up ahead of the civic polls.

The Panaji-based leader is an arch rival of local MLA Atanasio Monserratte, who is heading a panel for the polls to the Corporation of City of Panaji (CCP), scheduled to be held on March 20.

"In view of the reconstitution of responsibilities, you are hereby relieved as the spokesperson of the Bharatiya Janata Party, Goa Pradesh," the order stated.

Tanavade on Wednesday had told reporters in Margao city that the party will address the rebellion within its fold in the next two to three days.

The elections for 11 municipal councils and the CCP are scheduled to be held later this month.

Also Read: Assam polls: GHADC polls postponed by Meghalaya Cabinet

Less than 40% Shacks Opens Up As Goa lacks Foreign Tourists

Due to the lack of foreign tourists, only 40% of the 350-odd beach shacks allotted by the tourist department have started business so far.

It is to be mentioned that in normal times, this time of the year would have been peak tourist season in Goa and the beach shacks would have been teeming with both foreign and domestic tourists.

Last month the government had started the process of demarcation of beach shacks along the North Goa coast.

“Less than average footfalls comprising mostly domestic tourists are not adequate to sustain all operators,” president of the Shack Owners’ Welfare Society (SOWS) Cruz Cardozo told The Times of India.