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FIA, healthcare commission’s reports sought in illegal organ trade case

Updated October 11, 2018

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FIA and KP Health Care Commission have been asked for detailed reports about the steps taken by them for checking illegal human organ trade.— Photo/File
FIA and KP Health Care Commission have been asked for detailed reports about the steps taken by them for checking illegal human organ trade.— Photo/File

PESHAWAR: The Peshawar High Court on Wednesday directed the Federal Investigation Agency and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa Health Care Commission to produce detailed reports about the steps taken by them for checking illegal human organ trade, especially for kidney transplantation.

A bench consisting of Justice Qaiser Rasheed and Justice Qalandar Ali Khan observed that the people dealing in illegal human organ transplantation should be treated strictly for committing a heinous offence.

It issued the order during the hearing into a petition filed by Kohat resident Mohammadullah Khan against the alleged illegal kidney transplantation to his uncle, Haji Habib Khan, by a group, including some doctors, for Rs2.55 million.

PHC observes people involved in this heinous offence shouldn’t be spared

The patient had died within two days of illegal transplantation.

The petitioner requested the court to direct FIA and HCC to order legal action against the culpable people as well as an inquiry into illegal organ trade.

The bench fixed Oct 25 for the next hearing into the petition asking FIA and HCC to produce separate reports explaining in detail the action taken by them against the groups and people dealing in illegal human organ transplantation.

Justice Qaiser Rasheed observed that tracing benami bank accounts should not be the only function of the FIA and instead, it should also pay heed to the issues threatening the people’s health and society.

He added that the FIA should play a pro-active role in checking illegal human organ trade.

HCC chief executive officer Azar Sardar showed up on the court’s order and said the commission had sealed around 1,700 illegal private hospitals, clinics and laboratories during a couple of weeks.

He said the commission didn’t spare anyone over illegal operation.

Mr Sardar insisted that checking illegal kidney transplantation was the FIA’s job.

An official of the FIA said the agency took necessary action whenever it learned about illegal organ trade.

Malik Ajmal Khan, lawyer for the petitioner, said Haji Habib Khan, a transport businessman based in Abu Dhabi had returned after falling ill and that doctors of a leading Islamabad hospital had advised him to transplant kidneys.

He added that Dr Nizakat of a private health facility promised the businessman and petitioner to arrange a kidney for transplantation on payment of Rs2.5 million.

The lawyer claimed that Dr Nizakat, Dr Ishfaq and Amin Sheikh received the money meant for the kidney donor in installments.

He said the patient and petitioner were told to reach Peshawar for kidney transplantation and when they did so on Mar 28, Amin Sheikh and few other people took away the patient asking the petitioner and other relatives to stay in the hotel.

The lawyer said initially the petitioner was told by Dr Ishfaq that the operation was successful but he was later asked to take the patient to a private hospital in Rawalpindi for admission to an intensive care unit.

He added a doctor of that hospital informed him on March 30 about Haji Habib’s critical condition and later disclosed his death.

The lawyer said his client failed to trace Amin Sheikh and Dr Ishfaq thereafter.

He said the relevant ambulance driver told the petitioner that he had brought the patient from the Al-Kareem Medical Centre, Peshawar.

Published in Dawn, October 11th, 2018