”I will charge Rs.15 lacs and the operation will happen in Kathmandu.”
These were the words of Dr Amit Kumar, India’s most wanted doctor, stating how much a kidney transplant would cost. Dr. Kumar, a.k.a Dr. Santosh Raut, is the notorious Indian kidney thief who did not have a license to perform a surgery but nevertheless stole more than 600 kidneys and sold them illegally. He is believed to have illicitly performed around 400-500 kidney transplants in his Gurgaon clinic. This clinic was run exclusively for foreigners, for whom it was a haven for life. It dealt with patients from as far away as Brazil and Venezuela, in need of a kidney, which they could not get anywhere else. The speedy operations conducted here also attracted a lot of customers.
Some decided to buy kidneys illegally, while others sold them for a few thousand rupees, there is was no dearth of demand or supply in the market of life. They used to remove kidneys from bodies of poor labourers and pay them between $1,280 and $2,560. However, the buyers paid the doctors about $30,000 to buy the kidneys. All this was a hush affair! The law says the donor has to be a close relative of the recipient. yet, with each foreign patient paying at least 25 lakh rupees to Dr Kumar, the operation was hugely successful- a successful transaction.
Three foreigners, Turkish nationals, had died during illegal transplant procedures at kidney racket kingpin Amit Kumar’s hospital in Gurgaon, Sector 23 between 2003 and 2005. The matter was hushed up and the deaths were shown to be results of a cardiac arrest. Dr Amit had links with at least 40 dialysis centres across Delhi. He used his contacts in these dialysis centres to pick up potential kidney recipients. Kumar has been identified as the mastermind behind a well-hyped illegal kidney trade – one of India’s biggest kidney rackets, which was exposed by a late-night raid on January 24 in a house in Gurgaon, India. Kumar had been arrested earlier as well, in a kidney racket in Khar in August 1994. But he was released on bail and wasn’t seen for a long time.
He is back again as a news target. The Nepal police arrested the man from a jungle resort camp in the southern town of Sauraha, about 60 km from the Indo-Nepal border town of Raxaul on February 7. Dr Kumar and his Nepali associate Manish Singh checked into Room Number 6 of the Hotel Wildlife Camp around 1000 hours on Thursday morning. While some newspapers or channels agree to this, others contend that the identity is yet to be confirmed and some others have a completely different story. Indian High Commissioner Shiv Shankar Mukherjee told CNN-IBN that the Nepali authorities have not given them any information about the arrest of Amit Kumar. The first to lay hands on it was the Himalayan Times. Nepal’s Minister of Home Affairs Ram Kumar Choudhary confirmed that a person named Amit Kumar Raut was arrested from a resort in Sauraha at around 1700 hours on Thursday. The DIG in his report to the minister confirmed that the police team also recovered Rs 1.5 crore of Indian currency, $1,45,000 and euro 9,36,000 from the person.
It is a pity that a profession as noble s the medical profession has become the playfield of such notorius criminals. Thus, Anton Chekov’s quote could not have been more apt here- “Doctors are the same as lawyers; the only difference is that lawyers merely rob you, whereas doctors rob you and kill you too.”
[Image by www.citynews.ca/images/2008-02/feb0308-kumar.jpg]