Monday, Oct 03, 2022

Kota Infant Deaths: Toll Reaches 107; Central Govt Team Visits JK Lon Hospital

Congress leader Harish Rawat said that the government is taking action against those responsible that lead to the death of infants.

A ward at JK Lon Hospital, Kota PTI Photo

Another infant died at Kota hospital in Rajasthan on Saturday, taking the toll to 107 since the beginning of December.

The latest death occurred at a time when a central government team visited the JK Lon Hospital to take stock of the situation.

Lok Sabha Speaker and Member Parliament from Kota, Om Birla, met the family members of the child who died at JK Lon Hospital on Saturday.

Senior Congress leader Ahmed Patel on Saturday held a meeting with party interim chief Sonia Gandhi over the children's death among other things. 

The rising child death toll at the Kota hospital has drawn severe criticism against Ashok Gehlot-led Rajasthan government.

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Several BJP and other opposition leaders have criticised the Congress-led government in the state for failing to handle the situation.

Congress leader Harish Rawat said that the Rajasthan government is taking against those responsible that lead to the death of infants.

"The government is focused and various steps are being taken by the Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot. Action is being taken action against those who were at fault. They are also being punished," Rawat said.

Health minister Dr. Raghu Sharma has been denying negligence on part of state machinery over the deaths of children in Kota.

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The Congress leader said that BJP had over the last five years destroyed the medical facilities in the state and his party is improving it now.

On his part, Gehlot has been saying that for his government, the health of children and their mothers is a top priority.

Gehlot said that an expert team of the central government was welcome to further improve health services in the state. "I welcome a delegation of the Central government and the state is committed to make Rajasthan 'Nirogi'. The government is sensitive towards the death of the children and there should be no politics over it, and in Kota the mortality rate has come down," he said earlier this week.

A three-member State government committee of doctors that was sent to investigate the matter on December 23 and 24 found that JK Lone Hospital is short of beds and requires improvement.

Amid the crisis in the Kota Hospital, the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) issued a notice to the Rajasthan government on Friday. The rights panel, in a statement, observed that the death of children in such a large number is a "matter of concern" for the commission.

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"The state is duty-bound to provide basic necessary medical care to its citizens," it said.

"The NHRC has taken suo motu cognisance of media reports about the death of more than 100 children at a government-run hospital in Kota district of Rajasthan in the month of December," the statement added.

(With agency inputs)