Health Min­istry to probe ‘gen­uine mis­take’

> Sources: Cops pur­sued flee­ing doc­tor as his frame re­sem­bled that of sus­pect

The Sun (Malaysia) - - NEWS WITHOUT BORDERS - BY CHARLES RAMENDRAN

KUALA LUMPUR: The Health Min­istry is con­duct­ing an in­ter­nal probe on the al­leged po­lice as­sault of a doc­tor, who was mis­taken for a rob­ber last Fri­day, to de­ter­mine the fac­tors that led to the in­ci­dent.

Min­istry deputy di­rec­tor-gen­eral (med­i­cal) Datuk Dr S. Jeyain­dran said yes­ter­day that he had or­dered a probe into the in­ci­dent which was front-paged by theSun on Wed­nes­day.

In de­scrib­ing the case as “very un­for­tu­nate” and em­pathis­ing with the vic­tim, he said a pre­lim­i­nary re­port showed that the po­lice­men, who are mem­bers of an elite fed­eral po­lice team, had re­acted by pur­su­ing the 28-year-old af­ter he de­fied po­lice or­ders not to flee.

“We learnt that the po­lice were there to am­bush a group of crim­i­nals. When the po­lice or­dered the doc­tor to stop, he con­tin­ued run­ning in the di­rec­tion of the sus­pected crim­i­nals. When he fell and the po­lice caught up with him, he al­legedly started punch­ing the po­lice­men, leav­ing the po­lice no choice but to ap­pre­hend him,” he told theSun when con­tacted.

Jeyain­dran said al­though the vic­tim told them he was a doc­tor and was wear­ing the ap­pro­pri­ate garb, po­lice had to take him to the po­lice sta­tion as part of po­lice pro­ce­dures to ver­ify this.

“It was a mis­un­der­stand­ing and is a very un­for­tu­nate in­ci­dent. We have to wait for the con­clu­sive find­ings of the po­lice as well to get both sides of the story,” he said.

Jeyain­dran said, how­ever, though not a ma­jor is­sue, the doc­tor should have no­ti­fied his col­league or su­pe­rior when he stepped out of the build­ing for his break to avoid un­ex­pected prob­lems like this.

“His su­pe­ri­ors were un­aware of the in­ci­dent un­til they re­ceived a call from the po­lice,” he said.

Jeyain­dran also agreed that the po­lice should not be solely blamed over the in­ci­dent as they were merely do­ing what they did best. “I think this should be treated as a learn­ing ex­pe­ri­ence for both par­ties.” Sepang po­lice chief ACP Ab­dul Aziz Ali said the case was a “gen­uine mis­take”. “What can we ex­pect the po­lice­men to do when some­one runs af­ter be­ing told not to? They had to counter such a re­ac­tion.” He said the po­lice had clearly iden­ti­fied them­selves when they ar­rived and told ev­ery­one at the stall not to run as they were there to catch a group of crim­i­nals. “We will con­tinue our in­ves­ti­ga­tions and be fair to both sides,” he told theSun. Sources said in­ves­ti­ga­tors also dis­cov­ered po­lice had also pur­sued the doc­tor as his physique re­sem­bled that of a sus­pect of the gang they had come to nab.

re­port yes­ter­day. Our front-page

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