Civil Hospital doctors feel “over-burdened”
The City News recently reported that as per recent government orders all rape cases in Karachi would be directed to the Civil Hospital’s medico-legal department whereas previously the Civil Hospital and Jinnah Hospital both shared the burden of handling rape and assault cases in Karachi. This was done because they wanted to centralize all cases under one jurisdiction (Civil falls under provincial government and Jinnah falls under federal government).
The drawbacks that were highlighted are summarised as follows:
a) The doctors at Civil Hospital were not consulted nor were they informed formally.
b) The Civil Hospital is already inundated with cases and has major resource constraints. They lack the necessary equipment and facilities to handle all the cases in Karachi and the already unreportedness of rape and assault will be adversely affected. Sometimes the doctors claim they have to pay out of their own pockets to help the victims.
c) Further exacerbated by the fact that victims find no relief in treatment where they have to be rushed and face a dearth of resources and plays havoc with their already maimed psyche.
This centralization of legal cases may make sense in light of coherence in legislative procedures but realities show otherwise. The most heinous crime in the city, the most traumatic experience for any human to go through, hundreds of cases in this enormous metropolis, dealt single-handedly by one hospital: is this fair?
A question comes to mind whether this move reflects the nominal number of cases that do get reported; are the rapes in this so underreported that the government feels that one hospital will be able to deal with the quantity all on its own?