The death toll in Gorakhpur’s BRD Medical College has risen to 60 plus including 30 children, out of which 23 were admitted in paediatric neo-natal wards. Nobel Laureate Kailash Satyarthi has tweeted that the incident, even after 70 years of the country’s Independence, is not a tragedy but a massacre. He goes on to tweet and appeals to CM Yogi, “Your decisive intervention can correct decades of corrupt medical system of UP to prevent such incidents.”
Meanwhile, CM Yogi Adityanath has asked his senior ministers including the Health Minister, Siddharth Nath Singh to probe the incident thoroughly and said he would take strict action against the culprits, once identified.
It might be noted here that the deaths were attributed to the sudden snapping of oxygen supply to the hospital by the company supplying it after it was not paid the dues accrued towards it by the hospital. It had also come to light that the hospital authorities despite repeated reminders by the oxygen supplying company, had failed to clear the dues that turned fatal for the patients.
But what is perplexing is the fact that CM Yogi Adityanath had visited the hospital only on Wednesday—a day before the tragedy struck—but the hospital administration did not reveal anything to him about the problems related to oxygen supply.
However, all eyes are now on what action Yogi Adityanath is going to take, as Gorakhpur is not just his constituency but also a testing ground for implementation of policies of his government to an extent.
The BRD Medical College has been always courted controversy with the deaths however. When Akhilesh was in power several deaths were reported from the hospital in 2015, that were caused by encephalitis—common in the region. However, many also pointed out negligent attitude of the hospital authorities also to be the reason. At that time also ministers from the SP cabinet visited the hospital and probe was ordered. But it seems no lessons were learnt from the past mistakes. Meanwhile, as encephalitis deaths are quite rampant in this part of the state, no concrete steps have been taken by any government so far to tackle the deadly menace.
Meanwhile, the company that supplied the oxygen—Pushpa Gas—had denied that oxygen supply could be stopped like this reportedly.
-Prasoon Pant, Editor, delhiNCRnews.in