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Punjab

ED begins probe into private lab’s fake Covid reports

June 29, 2020 05:37 AM

COURTESY HT JUNE 29

ED begins probe into private lab’s fake Covid reports
Gagandeep Jassowal

gagandeep@htlive.com

JALANDHAR : The Enforcement Directorate (ED) has started an investigation into the alleged fake Covid-19 reports prepared by an Amritsar laboratory to check if money changed hands through illegal means, it is learnt.

The Punjab vigilance bureau on June 23 had booked four persons, including the owners of Tuli Diagnostic Centre, under attempt to murder charges for endangering the lives of people by allegedly issuing fake reports.

The reports of four persons, including a pregnant woman, found positive by the laboratory were declared as negative by the Government Medical College and Hospital (GMC), Amritsar, in retesting on June 18.

The bureau had also booked a private hospital and its doctors for allegedly colluding with the laboratory to commit the fraud. The accused are diagnostic centre owner Dr Robin Tuli, his wife Dr Ridham Tuli, pathologist Dr Sanjay Piplani, Dr Mohinder Singh, EMC super-speciality hospital owner Dr Pawan Arora, and Dr Pankaj Soni.

Officials privy to the development said the central agency has written to the bureau to share a copy of the first information report (FIR) and other related documents so that they can carry forward their probe under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act.

The bureau had received three complaints against the lab and the hospital on June 20. A team conducted raids on the lab and the hospital seizing Covid-19 testing records and other documents. Besides, the team sealed the testing machine of the lab till further orders.

The vigilance FIR says the scam was being run by the lab and the hospital in connivance with some government doctors.

The Tuli Diagnostic Centre, which is the first private lab in the state to have started Covid-19 testing, has approached the Punjab and Haryana High Court stating that the vigilance bureau was interfering in its functioning.

It demanded that the vigilance bureau should be restrained from conducting raids at its premises and release the equipment and records seized illegally. The high court fixed the next hearing in the case on July 3

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