In what could draw criticism for both the medical system and judiciary in the country, a 72-year-old man, identified as Ram Kumar, was sent to the hospital by a court just because he was arguing too much with the lawyers. A Delhi court made a decision in this regard, sending him to Institute of Human Behaviour and Allied Sciences (IHBAS) without a certificate of mental illness.However, the Delhi High court has come down heavily on the court and made sure that Kumar is freed after 20 days of unjustified detention.
Earlier, his appeal was turned down by the trial court. On November 3, Kumar was sent for medical examination at Baba Saheb Ambedkar Hospital by the trial court judge who was hearing the matter where Kumar had been defending himself in a motor vehicle accident case for a decade.
Ram Kumar. Iimage: India Today
During the arguments, he entered into an altercation with the advocates of the other party that led to his detention at the mental hospital. After a brief examination based on his argumentative behaviour, he was referred to the psychiatric ward of the hospital for further medical examination.
The doctor stated that “no psychopathology was detected” while examining Kumar. Following this, Kumar was once again produced before the magistrate who after a brief interaction with him concluded that he had to be kept under observation at IHBAS for another 24 hours, as he seemed violent.
The judge also stated in the order that Kumar was not able to provide the whereabouts of his family.
The judges, who were hearing the matter noted the violation of the Mental Health Act by the magistrate court that ordered Kumar’s detention and even extended it without issuing the mandatory mental illness certificate.
During his detention at IHBAS, Kumar maintained that he was not a patient and refused to sit on his bed. When Kumar was again produced before the magistrate in front of his two sons on November 5 and November 20, the orders of keeping him under detention till January 5, 2018, were passed after it was stated that his medical evaluation was still in progress at IHBAS.
The bench observed that though the final report revealed that Kumar had no high-risk behaviour, even then IHBAS did not instruct the prosecution to bring this fact before the magistrate at once. Kumar’s sons told the high court that their father was a heart patient and underwent traumatic experience at the mental health hospital.