Bangladesh arrests hospital owner over fake coronavirus test results

WION Web Team Dhaka, Bangladesh Jul 16, 2020, 10.08 AM(IST)

Mohammad Shahed Photograph:( AFP )

Story highlights

The arrest on Wednesday marked the end of a nine-day manhunt for Mohammad Shahed over allegations of giving fake certificates to patients saying they were virus-free without even testing them.

A Bangladesh hospital owner accused of issuing thousands of fake negative coronavirus test results to patients at his two clinics was arrested while trying to flee to India in a burqa.

The arrest on Wednesday marked the end of a nine-day manhunt for Mohammad Shahed over allegations of giving fake certificates to patients saying they were virus-free without even testing them.

Shahed was one of more than a dozen people detained by authorities over the past few days in connection with the scam.

Experts warn the false documents has worsened the already dire virus situation in the country of 168 million people by casting doubt about the veracity of certificates issued by clinics.

His hospitals carried out 10,500 coronavirus tests, out of which 4,200 were genuine and the rest, 6,300 test reports, were given without conducting tests.

Shahed is also accused of charging for the certificates and virus treatments even though he had agreed with the government that his hospitals in the capital Dhaka would provide free care.

Bangladesh has reported just over 193,000 infections and 2,457 deaths so far.

But medical experts say the real figures are likely much higher because so little testing has been carried out.