Mum­bai man jumps queue to get brain-dead brother’s kid­ney SC raps state govt, per­mits dance bars to serve al­co­hol

Hindustan Times ST (Mumbai) - HT Navi Mumbai Live - - FRONT PAGE - HT Correspondent ht­metro@hin­dus­tan­ HT Correspondent let­ters@hin­dus­tan­

Ow­ing to ex­cep­tional cir­cum­stances, a 47-year-old ad­vo­cate from Mum­bai with end-stage kid­ney dis­ease has been al­lowed to re­ceive a kid­ney from his 45-year-old brain-dead brother, by­pass­ing 3,000 peo­ple in line for a trans­plant.

The de­ci­sion to ap­prove the trans­plant was taken on Wed­nes­day. Dr Jagdish Prasad, direc­tor gen­eral of the Direc­torate of Health Ser­vices (DHS), Delhi, de­cided to al­low Nitin Vhatkar, the re­cip­i­ent, to jump the queue on hu­man­i­tar­ian grounds as he has no blood rel­a­tives other than his younger brother San­deep, who was de­clared brain-dead last Fri­day, after suf­fer­ing a brain haem­or­rhage. A kid­ney is more likely to be com­pat­i­ble with a re­cip­i­ent if the donor is a blood rel­a­tive. Dr Prasad also took into ac­count the fact that Nitin is will­ing to do­nate his brother’s heart, liver, corneas and one of his kid­neys — pro­vided he gets the other.

The direc­tor of DHS, Ma­ha­rash­tra, had ap­proved the trans­plant on Tues­day night, but there was a de­bate on whether it con­tra­vened the law, so the mat­ter was sent to DHS, Delhi. Dr Prasad said he gave his ap­proval as the two are re­lated and be­cause oth­ers will ben­e­fit from Nitin’s de­ci­sion to do­nate his brother’s or­gans.

The Supreme Court termed se­lec­tive pro­hi­bi­tion on serv­ing liquor in­side the dance bar by the Ma­ha­rash­tra gov­ern­ment as ab­surd and said it in­di­cated the state’s “re­gres­sive mind­set by cen­turies”.

“If a bar has the li­cence to serve liquor, how can you stop them from serv­ing it in the area where dancers per­form? Ei­ther you ban liquor com­pletely. But you can’t say dance bars will not serve liquor,” the bench headed by jus­tice Di­pak Misra told se­nior coun­sel Shekhar Naphade, ap­pear­ing for the state.

Nitin Vhatkar: The re­cip­i­ent

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