Woman COVID-19 patient raped by ambulance driver

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Pathanamthitta: A 19-year-old woman COVID-19 patient was allegedly raped by an ambulance driver while shifting her to a first line treatment centre near here, police said on Sunday.

Taking note of it, the State Women’s Commission registered a case on its own into the incident, which drew wide condemnation from the opposition Congress and BJP, even as health minister K K Shailaja said strict instructions had been given to take strong action against the culprit.

The ambulance driver Noufal (29) was taken into custody on Sunday based on a complaint by the victim’s mother to the hospital authorities and the police.

He was dismissed from service, the Kanivu 108 Ambulance Services said in a release. According to police, the incident occurred at Aranmula on Saturday.

The girl was admitted to a hospital at Adoor after she and her mother tested positive for coronavirus.

While she was being shifted to the First Line Treatment Centre (CFLTC) later, the driver took her to an empty plot and raped her.

Pathanamthitta Superintendent of Police P K G Simon told reporters that they nabbed the culprit soon after being informed about the incident.

“He is from Kayamkulam and is an accused in an earlier murder case. We are looking into the details. The incident was very unfortunate,” Simon said.

He said the driver raped the woman at an empty plot at Aranmula near Pathanamthitta.