KUALA LUMPUR, March 7 (Bernama) -- The Health Ministry will launch an independent probe into the two autopsy reports relating to the death of A. Kugan, 22, the suspected car thief who died while in the custody of the Taipan police station in Subang Jaya on Jan 20.
Health director-general Tan Sri Mohd Ismail Merican said the step was being taken to ensure impartiality following various allegations directed at the ministry over the matter.
He stressed that the Health Ministry did not hide the facts and findings of the post-mortem conducted by the Serdang Hospital as had been reported by certain parties.
"The forensic pathologist from Serdang Hospital, who has over 20 years experience, had performed his duty ethically and professionally while conducting the post-mortem examination.
So we have an ethical and professional forensic team from Serdang Hospital, right?
"Nevertheless, the Ministry of Health will be conducting a formal independent inquiry on both post-mortem reports in the interest of justice and fairplay and will inform the public the outcome of the investigation," he said in a statement here today.
A controversy arose on the Serdang Hospital post-mortem after a second autopsy done on the request of the deceased's family at the Universiti Malaya Medical Centre (UMMC) indicated Kugan's death was due to multi organ failure because of severe beating.
The Serdang Hospital report had stated that death was due to fluid accumulation in his lungs.
Mohd Ismail said forensic pathologists conducting post-mortem examinations may have a difference in opinion as to the actual cause of death but what was important was that the findings during the examination should be almost similar as evidenced in this case, which for the lungs was pulmonary hemorrhage, edema and congestion.
But how the Serdang Hospital pathologist derived with the conclusion that fluid accumulated in Kugan's lungs, when they have NEVER open up the body?? They have an x-ray eyes that can see thru the body?
On the difference in the cause of death, he said it needed to be referred to independent forensic experts, based on the findings of the two pathologists doing the post-mortems.
He also dismissed claims by Kugan's family, which were reported by the Malaysiakini website, that the Serdang Hospital pathologist had listed 22 injuries on the body compared to the 40 additional injuries, burn marks and scratches indicated in the second report.
"The Serdang Hospital report showed 83 wounds and injuries. The description of each is more detailed in the Serdang Hospital report," he said, adding that the UMMC report was also not accurate as some of the wounds reported were caused by cutting during the first post-mortem examination.
No matter how detailed information is ducomented in the post-mortem, only the cause of death is relevant, isn't it?
He said the Serdang Hospital report made available to Kugan's family and published on the website was a comprehensive report while the record of the detailed findings and pictures taken during the first post-mortem were kept at the Serdang Hospital for court reference.
"It is not fair for anyone to make baseless allegations in this case as the Serdang Hospital pathologist had carried out his duties ethically and professionally," he said.
Mohd Ismail added that the ministry did not want discuss the cause of Kugan's death in the open and urged the public not to make any more baseless allegations until the responsible parties completed their investigations, including the ministry itself.
He further assured that the case would be given serious attention, but at the same time, said the ministry hoped the public would be patient until the independent panel completed its job.
TIME?? Time needed after the body is perished?? Why not done right at once instead?? How much is required for tax payers to pay for the independent forensic team on this??