News headlines

Excerpts from UAE Dailies

‘Dead’ man found alive in Sharjah

DUBAI — May 01: The friends of 25-year-old Alle Rajeswar never thought they would see him alive. They were, in fact, searching frenetically for his body in hospitals and morgues in Dubai and Sharjah. They finally located him yesterday, alive, though in a critical condition, in Al Qassimi Hospital in Sharjah.

The first thing the friends of the accident victim did after that was to inform his family in India that their bread-earner was alive, and not dead, as they had been informed earlier.

The confusion started immediately after Rajeswar, an Indian labourer, met with an accident in Sharjah Industrial area on April 11. "He was hit by a car while he was crossing the road on a bicycle. Some of his village folks who live in Sharjah happened to witness the incident and saw the police ambulance carrying his body, covered in a pool of blood. They presumed he was dead," said Ganesan, a friend of Rajeswar.

"And they informed others, including his family in Hyderabad, that Rajeswar was no more," he added.

"Rajeswar's family, which comprises- his aged parents, wife and a child were devastated to learn about his death. They started calling us to help repatriate his body to India," the victim's friend added.  "We went to all the hospitals and morgues in Dubai and Sharjah but we failed to trace his body for over two weeks. We also informed his family that we had failed to locate his body," Ganesan added.

Meanwhile, some friends of Rajeswar approached the Valley of Love, a social organisation in the UAE, to locate his body. C.P. Mathew, a volunteer of Valley said that while searching for Rajeswar's body, they were informed by a Sharjah traffic police official that an unidentified Indian man had been admitted to Al Qassimi Hospital a few days ago.

"We rushed to the hospital immediately, along with Rajeswar's friends," Mathew pointed out. "We discovered that this man was none other than Rajeswar. His friends could not contain their joy on finding him alive. However, his condition is critical as he is suffering from multiple fractures and head injury," Mathew added.

"Rajeswar is unable to speak, but he recognised us and smiled," said Ganesan.

However, the woes of Rajeswar's family do not end here. They are now worried how they'll be able to meet the expenses of his treatment.


Apply, receive medical certificates online now

DUBAI — May 01: With the implementation of E-Service Registration from today, expatriates residing in Dubai can now seek medical fitness certificates from the Department of Health and Medical Services (Dohms) by applying online, senior health officials said yesterday.

Maisa Al Bustani, Head of Medical Fitness Centre in Dohms, told Khaleej Times that expatriates will not be required to visit the centre at all, except for laboratory tests. "We have decided to cut down the entire process and make it easier for both the clients and the provider," she said.

Explaining the procedure, Maisa said the new online service is accessible through Dohms main web site

"Individuals or corporate establishments can register and pay online (through credit card/or in cash later) in a few simple steps only. An appointment date will be sent to them and they can visit the lab at their own convenience," she explained.

Maisa also said the lab report will be e-mailed to the applicants. "They can then print copies of the certificate," she added.

She explained that the Medical Fitness Centre provided a free-of-disease certificate to all non-local employees working in Dubai for Dh210. "This is a compulsory requirement for visa application or renewal," she said. 

"At present, there are over 35 major corporate accounts registered as our main service users. Each organisation holds more than 4,000 non-local employees. Also registered are small business companies and individuals who use the service on a daily basis," she added.

She explained that the Al Maktoum Medical Fitness Centre at Al Maktoum Hospital and Jebel Ali Medical Fitness Centre in Jebel Ali were for the labour particularly. "Al Satwa Occupational Clinic also catered to labourers while a super special service at Al Safa VIP Medical Fitness at Al Safa Clinic provides a luxury service for Dh690," she added.

"A new centre will be opened at Al Qusais Labour Complex. Our service is also available in some health clinics such as Al Twar, Al Khawaneej and Al Mankhool. These are specifically for companies," added Maisa.

A workshop to demonstrate the procedure will also be held on May 20 at the Rashid Medical Library Building in Rashid Hospital Complex.


Warning over selling drugs sans prescription

ABU DHABI — May 01: Pharmacies that sell prescribed drugs without medical prescription will face harsh penalties, a senior health official has warned.

The practice of selling prescribed medicines without prescriptions for commercial purposes has been on the rise, endangering safety of patients, especially those complaining of chronic diseases.

"Pharmacies which are found selling prescribed medicines to patients without a prescription will be liable to penalties in accordance with the pharmacy laws and regulations," said Dr Issa bin Jakkha Al Mansoori, Director of the Drug Control Department (DCD) at the Ministry of Health (MoH).

The punishment could include cancellation of pharmacy licence, fines and even jail terms, said the official.

"This will ensure safety of patients against some unscrupulous pharmacists who do not abide by the pharmacy law for commercial gains," said Dr Mansoori.

Under the law, prescribed medication should not be sold without a medical prescription written and authorised by a licensed specialist.

Lack of electronic system in some pharmacies, too, makes it difficult for the MoH inspection team to keep record of all sold prescribed medicines, Dr Mansoori pointed out. "The MoH is contemplating ways to introduce e-service in all pharmacies in order to track down violations," he said.

Dr Mansoori stressed greater public awareness about self-medication and urged the public to report to the ministry any violations concerning sale of prescribed drugs without official authorisation.

"Retaining the bill is very important for indictment of violating pharmacies because it will help in investigation process," said Dr Mansoori, adding that the Ministry of Health conducts daily visits to pharmacies to keep a check on adherence to rules.


Drug abuse: SC orders retrial of man given death penalty

ABU DHABI — May 01: The Federal Supreme Court ordered retrial of a man, who was sentenced to death by the lower court for being in possession of heroin and drug abuse, because his confession to the police was not taken down by a legally authorised translator.|

Court records showed that the Public Prosecution charged the accused, identified as MN, with being in possession of heroin and drug abuse.

The Prosecution appealed to the court that the culprit be penalised in accordance with the rulings of the Islamic Sharia law and the Federal Penal Code. The Sharjah Sharia Court of First Instance handed down the defendant death sentence. The ruling was upheld by the Sharjah Shariah Court of Appeal. The convict moved the Federal Supreme Court contending that the previous ruling should be declared null and void since his confession to the police was given in the absence of a legally authorised translator. The apex court observed that as per Article 70 of the Federal Penal Code, the Prosecution should have provided a licensed legal translator during interrogations because the accused neither speaks nor understands Arabic. The Apex Court annulled the rulings of the lower courts and ordered fresh trial.


Lost documents: no need for police intervention now

ABU DHABI — May 01: Lost your passport, or some official documents issued by the government or non-government bodies in the emirate? If you have, then you need not require the intervention of the police any more.

Brigadier Mohammed Al Awadi Al Menhali, Acting Director-General of Police Operations at the Abu Dhabi Police Headquarters, has said that in case of loss of official documents, the Naturalisation and Residency departments will issue fresh documents without the need for the affected person to report the matter to the police.

"People can directly approach the Naturalisation and Residency Department now to get a fresh document issued in place of the lost one," Brig. Al Menhali said.

He added that while the UAE nationals would be issued new passports at the the Naturalisation and Residency Department, the expatriates can approach their respective embassies for the issuing of new passports.

The move follows the instructions of the Minister of Interior, Lt.-Gen. Shaikh Saif bin Zayed Al Nahyan, who had underlined that this step aimed at saving the time of people, who had to approach the police to notify them about the lost documents.



Dubai - May 01: The man responsible for keeping dangerous drivers off Dubai’s roads has called for tougher sentences for people who repeatedly drink and drive. Salah Abu Farrousha, head of Public Prosecution for Traffic Offences, told 7DAYS that incidences of re-offending for drink driving are worryingly high in the Emirate and that drunk drivers should be considered as “time bombs” on the road.

“Drivers who drink alcohol not only risk harming themselves but others also. They are time bombs because they are endangering others by driving under the influence of alcohol,” Abu Farrousha said. He added: “When they are convicted and go back on the road under the influence again, they are showing no regard for their crime.”
According to Traffic Public Prosecution records, of 1,130 cases referred to them since the beginning of this year until the end of March, at least 270 were drinking and driving accidents. “The sad thing is that in several of these cases, drivers went on trial for the second time for the same charge,” Abu Farrousha explained.

“These reckless motorists need to be stopped by handing them tougher penalties, either with prison sentences, fines or cancelling their driving licences for a very long period.” Abu Farrousha told 7DAYS of several recent cases where people were caught drink driving despite having previously been punished for the same offence.  Last week an Asian woman identified as MA, was sentenced to one month in prison and had her licence confiscated for two months after being caught driving under the influence.  She had already been convicted and spent time in jail after being caught for the same offence last December - that time she jumped a red light and hit another car injuring two people.

Another drunk motorist was sentenced to one month in prison and fined dhs2,100. It was the European driver’s second offence - having been fined for driving under the influence in February. “We want this to stop. They shouldn’t drive if they are drunk,” Abu Farrousha said, “Just imagine how many kids and families die because of drunk drivers.”
Current sentences for drink driving range from one month to six months in jail, although punishments can be harsher if someone is injured or killed by someone under the influence. Dubai’s roads have seen a massive rise in the number of people killed as a result of drink driving. In 2005 a total of 13 people were killed in drink driving accidents. That figure rose by over 500 per cent last year to 75 victims, according to police figures.
By Ali Al-Shouk


Dubai - Convicted of murder

Dubai - May 01: A man who cut the finger off his victim to steal a diamond ring before knifing him to death has been jailed for life. The 29-year-old Uzbek and two others attacked and killed their victim in the desert after stealing dhs60,000 in cash their target had on him to buy a new car.
The victim had arranged to meet the three men in Sharjah to purchase a vehicle, the Court of First Instance was told. Following the meeting, the killers drove out into the desert and killed the man. Police discovered the mutilated body in the Jebel Ali area of the emirate. One of the men is still being sought by police after fleeing the country.
The other was convicted of helping in the crime.



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