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RIP Father Pinto: Ex-Holy Family Hospital director who fought for closure of Okhla waste-to-energy plant

Rev Fr Arthur Raymond Pinto was buried on Saturday in the York Graveyard, New Delhi, BY Rizvana.

The former director of Holy Family Hospital had some health complications two weeks ago and was admitted in the hospital. He served as a director from 2002 to 2013.

He was recovering but suddenly got a massive heart attack on August 2 in the evening. The doctors tried their best to save him but his condition deteriorated and was declared dead after some time.

A prayer meeting was held in Holy Family Hospital’s auditorium today.

Father George PA, the director of the hospital, said Father Pinto was a great hospital administrator and his contributions will be remembered forever.

Dr Sumbul Warsi, the medical superintendent, has worked with Father Pinto as well. She said Father Pinto was a humble person and did a lot of work for the hospital. Many senior doctors and hospital staff were present in the meeting.

Born on April 16, 1951 and brought up in old Delhi’s Ballimaran area, Father Pinto went to St Xavier’s College and later did his MBA from Australia. He worked for leprosy patients and destitute in West Champaran, Bihar. After serving in different areas he was appointed the director of the hospital.

After almost 11 years he was attached to Delhi Diocese and was appointed as the priest of one of the India’s oldest churches in Karol Bagh.

Father Pinto was a keen environmentalist and took great interest in the surroundings of the Holy Family Hospital in Okhla. He was among the first to alert the local community to the dangers from locating a large waste-to-energy incinerator in close proximity to the Holy Family Hospital as being harmful for patients as well as residents. Together with the nearby Fortis Escorts Heart Care Institute he wrote to the Prime Minister’s Office protesting against toxic emissions from the WtE plant. He introduced elaborate water harvesting facilities within the sprawling hospital campus, long before they became mandatory.

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