Even as one has to face hardship to obtain genuine bills after receiving treatment in Government hospitals, an incident in which a KR Hospital doctor has issued a fake bill for Rs. 18,000 to a government employee, who was treated in a nursing home, has been reported.

The doctor charged with issuing the duly signed fake bills has been identified as Dr. Ashok Gupta, serving in the Department of Skin Diseases. The Government employee, who has been issued the fake bills amounting to Rs. 18,000, has been identified as Chandrashekharaiah, a 'D' Group staff in the office of the Assistant Director, Department of Animal Husbandry and Veterinary Services on Dhanvantri Road, Mysore. Chandrashekharaiah had been treated at Indira Nursing Home in Vijayanagar first stage following illness. The doctor at the nursing home is learnt to have pleaded his inability to sign the bills needed by the patient for claiming reimbursement of medical expenses and suggested him to obtain the doctor's signature from the doctor in Krishna-rajendra (KR) Hospital. The patient is reported to have deposed to the enquiring officials that after he approached Dr. Ashok Gupta in Emergency Department of K.R. Hospital and explained the situation to him seeking his help by issuing the bills, the doctor issued to him three days later prescriptions and signed medical bills for Rs. 18,000 from Arjun Medicals on Narayana Shastri Road.

Enquiries have revealed that Dr. Gupta has issued prescriptions on 4th of the same month for medicines of two months' requirements and again on 8th and 12th of the month for medicines required for two months on each occasion. However, the medical store which has issued the bills is found to be not there at the address and, therefore, it has been inferred that the doctor himself had issued the fake bills. Further in the backdrop of the prescriptions, medical bills and the form used for claiming the reimbursement of medical bills from Zilla Panchayat submitted by the employee, having the same handwriting, it is thought that the entire job of preparing the fake bill is the handiwork of the same person. The then Chief Executive Officer of Mysore Zilla Panchayat K.R. Niranjan had constituted a committee of enquiry into the case on getting suspicious when the papers relating to the claim for reimbursement of medical expenses came up for counter-signature. Dr. Devdas, Deputy Director, Department of Animal Husbandry and Veterinary Services, was appointed as the Chairman of the Committee. It was found out during the enquiry that Dr. Gupta had received money from Chandrashekharaiah and issued him the fake bills and claim papers with his signatures.

It may be recalled here that Venkatamma, an Assistant cook and Nanjundaswamy, 'D' Group staff of Chidarahalli student hostel, T. Narasipur Taluk, had also obtained fake medical bills from Krishnarajendra Hospital doctors — Dr. Indunathan and Dr. Abdul Ravoof with their signatures — had been suspended. It is also learnt that Sharadamma, First Division Assistant, Office of the Medical Officer, Zilla Panchayat, Mysore, Avvayaar, a First Division clerk, office of Deputy Director, Department of Public Instruction and Kandagannappa, 'D' group staff, had also tried to obtain reimbursement of medical expenses by submitting fake medical bills and got caught.

The District Administration is contemplating on conducting an enquiry into the existence of a racket in KR Hospital engaging itself with preparing fake medical bills for making a fast buck.