Siddaramaiah’s Convoy Stops Ambulance, Patient Walks to Hospital
The incident is one of many, all involving the CM’s convoy stopping ambulances citing “security reasons”
Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah's image took another hit when his security personnel were accused of stopping an ambulance again, this time forcing a woman patient to walk the last hundred metres to reach the hospital.
The incident follows a series of similar ones dating back to 2015, all involving the Chief Minister’s convoy stopping ambulances citing security as a reason.
The latest incident was reported from Nagamangala in Karnataka's Mandya district, where part of the road was blocked for the Chief Minister's convoy to pass through. When the ambulance reached the spot, it was caught behind the barricades put up by the Chief Minister's security.
Citing security as the reason, the ambulance was not allowed to pass through.
Chief Minister Siddaramaiah was headed to participate in the foundation stone laying ceremony of Kanaka Bhavana in Nelamangala when the ambulance was allegedly made made to stop, neglecting the condition of the patient.
Relatives of the patient were reportedly asked to step down from the ambulance and walk the last few hundred metres to the hospital.
Here are some of the times the Chief Minister’s convoy – and that of other VVIPs – blocked an ambulance in Karnataka:
15 August 2015
Not one, not two, but three ambulances were stalled at Gayatri Vihar in Bengaluru to make way for the Chief Minister’s convoy which was headed to a wedding. When this happened, a traffic warden put up a social media post, lamenting, “I feel disappointed that despite being a traffic warden I could not do much to help three ambulance pass when the traffic was stopped so the Karnataka Chief Minister Siddharamaiah’s vehicle could pass.”
I even approached and requested the CM’s security police jeep that was coming from Gayatri Vihar to allow the ambulances to pass, but they just pushed me and went ahead. The ambulance had to wait for more 20 minutes. I asked for the name of the inspector and he said it was Nagalingaiah. ‘Do whatever you want, we came here for CM’s duty, not to allow ambulances to be’ he told me.HM Sathyanarayana, Volunteer, Traffic Wardens Organisation
29 June 2016
In June 2016, an ambulance was held up in a traffic jam for almost 30 minutes to make way for Siddaramaiah's convoy on the Bengaluru-Chintamani highway. A video of the incident, where some men were seen pleading with the police to let the ambulance pass, went viral on social media. When asked about the issue, he CM reportedly said, “I don't know anything. Central range IG will inquire into the case."
16 February 2017
Earlier this year on 16 February, an ambulance with a critical patient on board was stuck for nearly 30 minutes at a traffic signal near Hoskote to make way for the Chief Minister’s convoy. Siddaramaiah was in Hoskote to unveil a statue of Sangoli Rayanna and launch some development projects.
2 May 2017
Siddaramaiah’s convoy was headed to Ravindra Kalakeshtra on JC road for Bhagiratha Jayanthi celebrations at around 6:45 pm. An ambulance was stopped on the road for several minutes to make way for the Chief Minister. He drew severe flak for the incident, after which Siddaramaiah promised that such incidents will not repeat again.
I was not aware of the incident (of traffic police stopping an ambulance). I learnt about it from the media reports. I had directed the police not to stop ambulances. Still the incident has happened unexpectedly.Siddaramaiah, Chief Minister, Karnataka
8 May 2017
However, just days after that promise, another ambulance was blocked in Bengaluru for VVIP movement. This time, the man at the centre of controversy was then state Home Minister G Parameshwara. An ambulance carrying a patient, who had suffered a cardiac arrest, was stopped on Queens Road, as several Congress leaders including Parameshwara were gathered outside the KPCC office on the road to welcome the new state party-in charge, KC Venugopal.
(This article was originally published on The News Minute and has been republished here with permission.)
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