SHRC orders probe into conditions at Mental Health Centre



The Kerala State Human Rights Commisison (SHRC) has taken a case and ordered an investigation into the sorry plight of residents of the Mental Health Centre, Peroorkada, here.

Commission chairperson Antony Dominic was taking suo motu action on the basis of a media report. He directed the Director of Health Services (DHS) and the Mental Health Centre Superintendent to conduct the investigation within three weeks and submit a report.

The patients were being put to indescribable hardship owing to lack of basic infrastructure. In a hospital with 530 beds, there were 702 patients on Tuesday. Over 200 patients were sleeping on the floor.

The isolation cells at the centre had windows but these had been barred by iron grilles. Even light was limited in the cells. The conditions at the hospital were a violation of the Mental Healthcare Act, with the patients living in a worse state than prisoners in jails, as per the media report.

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