Telangana tribal woman doctor dies days after attempting suicide over harassment

Dr. Preethi Dharavath, 26, the first-year postgraduate student of Kakatiya Medical College (KMC) in Telangana’s Warangal who allegedly attempted suicide on February 22 following harassment from a senior doctor Dr Mohammed Saif, was declared dead Sunday night by Nizam’s Institute of Medical Sciences (NIMS) in Hyderabad where she was under treatment.

Dr. Preethi is an aspiring anesthetist MD and hailed from a denotified nomadic Banjara community.

“Despite continuous efforts by a multidisciplinary team of specialist doctors, Dr Preethi could not be saved and was declared dead on February 26, 2023 at 9.10 pm,” said a release by NIMS Medical Superintendent Dr N Satyanarayana on Sunday evening.

Her father has sought an inquiry by a high court judge into the matter and alleged her senior’s involvement in the death.

Preethi was found unconscious in the staff room of MGM Hospital where she was on duty on 22 February 22.

Last Friday, police arrested Dr Mohammed Saif, a second-year MD student in the same anaesthesia department as Preethi, on the charge of abetment to suicide, besides invoking sections related to ragging and those under the SC/ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act.

“It’s an institutional murder,” said BAPSA, a Bahujan student movement in JNU.