A woman with a child with autism, who was on her way to a doctor’s appointment at a local hospital in the northern Indian state of Uttar Pradesh was denied admission to the hospital because she couldn’t get a taxi.
Her child, who also has a disability, was also in the hospital.
The hospital was unable to give her an ambulance because the doctors at the local hospital were not authorised to transport people with disabilities.
So, the mother was given an ambulance by her husband and drove her to the nearest police station.
The police, who were not involved in the incident, took her to a hospital, but were not able to help because the hospital had no ambulances to transport her to.
She then got a taxi from the nearest station and drove to the police station, where she was finally allowed to enter the hospital to see her child.
The father had taken his daughter to the doctor’s office earlier.
But the police refused to give him a taxi to transport his daughter back to his home because he was also not authorised by the local authority to transport persons with disabilities to hospitals.
“The police told me to come back later in the evening.
I came back at 3am and saw that my daughter had been admitted to a local medical centre, which had no medics on duty to take her to hospital.
She was being transported to the local police station,” the mother, who did not want to be named, told Al Jazeera.
“I tried to explain to them that she had a baby, but they told me she had to go to the ambulance.”
When she tried to take a taxi, she was refused by the police, because they did not have the required permits to operate taxis in the area.
“When I tried to drive her to my home, the police stopped me and demanded that I pay Rs 10,000 ($1,000) for her to be taken to the nearby police station for further investigation,” the woman said.
She tried to leave the hospital on her own, but the police ordered her to wait for another day, she said.
The next day, the woman was again refused entry to the private hospital where she had been taken to, and the police again refused to allow her to leave.
“She got into a taxi and left.
We called the police and she was taken to hospital again.
But they refused to take us to the medical centre,” the patient, who has not been named, said.
“It was really distressing, but it wasn’t that bad.
But it was the first time I have been denied a taxi for my child, and it is the first instance of me not being able to get medical help in a medical facility,” she added.
“We have had the police say that the police are not authorised or authorised to do that and that there is no emergency or transport vehicle, so we are stuck in the car.
The government should have issued a permit for the doctors to transport children with disabilities, but not the police,” she said, adding that the family has not yet received a response from the government.
In the meantime, the family is struggling to make ends meet on her monthly salary of Rs 5,000.
“At the moment we don’t have enough money to buy food, rent a house or pay our medical bills.
We are still in debt.
It is very hard.
We have been waiting for four months for the government to provide us with a permit to travel to a private hospital,” she lamented.
Al Jazeera’s Zahid Qureshi, reporting from New Delhi, said the family was forced to travel without a permit because they are unable to afford the medical treatment they need.
“What the government should be doing is providing a medical exemption for doctors who can do the necessary treatment in a private facility.
That would give people with mental disabilities a right to get the medical care they need,” Quresh said.