28th December , 2010
Ms.Mamta Banerjee, Union Minister for Railways, Government of India
Mr.Praful Patel, Union Minister for Civil Aviation, Government of India
Subject : Quota for Critically ill & Medical Emergency patients
Dear Hon’ble Ministers,
I have the honour to write to you on behalf of DMAI (Disease Management Association of India) – The Population Health Improvement Alliance, concerning Quota in trains and airlines for critical ill and medical emergency patients .For airlines, I am aware of the frequent flyers quota ( As a Platinum Member of Jet Airways, I am guaranteed a seat at the full fare 24 hours before departure ). I believe, that the members of Parliament have a quota with NACIL. The different quotas in railways in mentioned below .
Head quarters/high official Quota
Parliament house Quota
Foreign Tourist Quota
Duty Pass Quota
Female(above 45 Year)/Senior Citizen/Travelling alone
Physically Handicapped Quota
Though, it is a matter of shame that despite 63 years of independence, we still have a waiting list that never gets confirmed, and needy passengers lose a day or sometimes are not able to reach their destination in time for treatment or pay more to touts who gets the reservation under HOR (Higher official Requisition ).
Besides the poor planning from the railways, one thing is clear; that a common man and his genuine needs are clearly ignored. We are aware of the fact that, during medical emergencies , people have to carry the sick patients to the various national institutes like TATA Memorial ( Mumbai ), AIIMS (Delhi ), NIMHANS etc, for referral , surgeries and other treatments , which are in major mega metros, and that too, at short notice many a times ! Similarly, for various other ailments, the patients have to travel to major towns where the facilities are available, and this might happen at an extremely short notice, and such a travel is necessary to save a precious life most of the times
To be short and accurate, people have to travel from ‘Bharat’ to ‘India’ to save the lives of their loved ones. What I am proposing is that, we must have a quota for medically-ill patients with one attendant at least .This quota must be available for all trains and same for airlines .
How to implement this quota ?
Let this be a simple process for an already suffering family with a medical emergency. Idea is , not to waste the most critical resource; ‘Time’ . The station manager or the station master must be empowered to allow the patient with not more than a one page single form with Xerox of medical report and an identity card, referral letter from a qualified government or private practitioner. The station master could call the doctor to verify the letter and approve thetravel instantly, so that the patient could board the train even if s/he has reached just before the train departure time !!
If you want , DMAI could assist you with qualified volunteers to help frame the guide lines for this . Travel should be made free for railways for AC III Tier , as it has been the failure of the government to provide good care facilities uniformly across India , and people have to travel for treatment to mega metros and other major nearest town for treatment . The guaranteed reservation should be for to & fro travel
I am sure that this is a very genuine request and the government will work out the modalities for implementing this from the next budget itself
We remain at your disposal for further information & assistance , should you need in this matter
In hope of the needful with an action taken report
We wish you a great year ahead . Happy New Year .
Yours truly ,
Rajendra Pratap Gupta
Dr.Manmohan Singh , Prime Minister , Government of India
Shri Pranab Mukerjee , Finance Minister , Government of India
Shri Ghulam Nabi Azad, Union Minister for Health & Family Welfare
Dr.Murli Manohar Joshi, M.P.
Arun Jaitley , Leader of Opposition – Rajya Sabha
Sushma Swaraj, Leader of Opposition – Lok Sabha
Dr.Syeda Hameed, Member , Planning Commission of India .
Dr.K.Srinath Reddy, President , Public Health Foundation of India
Secretary for Health & Family Welfare Government of India