KARUR: A PHC nurse working in Karur Municipality was suspended by Municipal Commissioner on Monday for stealing Covishield vaccines from the hospital and selling them in her hometown of Dindigul.
Dhanalakshmi (58) of Vedasandur in Dindigul district has been working as a nurse in the Kasthuri Bai Government Maternity Centre for the past 35 years. Based on a tip-off, Vedasandur Block Health Officials led by Health Officer Pon Maheswari held a surprise inspection at Dhanalaskhmi’s house on Sunday.
They found her in possession of eight vials of Covishield. She had reportedly stolen several vaccines from the government hospital in Karur and been illegally selling them at a higher price from her house. Based on a complaint by the officials filed with the Municipality and the Health Department, the Municipal Commissioner suspended her on Monday and the department ordered an investigation and a criminal case to be filed against Dhanalaskhmi.
Karur District Health Department Deputy Director Santhosh Kumar said, “Based on the complaint, a team of officials went to Dhanalakshmi’s house in Vedasandur on Monday to investigate. We are still not aware of how many vials she had stolen and for how long she had been doing this. A criminal case will be against her after receiving a full investigation report.”
One of the senior doctors at Kasthuri Bai Maternity Centre said, “Dhanalakshmi has been working for over three decades in our hospital. She is about to retire in the next six months and was about to receive retirement benefits and pension. Now, she herself has unnecessarily spoilt all that. She used to report wastage of two or three vials of vaccine every day during the camp, which is normal. So, we had no suspicion.”