Gorakhpur tragedy: Chief secretary submits report, action follows

Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath had formed the committee on August 12 to probe the incident, a day after deaths of scores of children in the state-run BRD Medical College came to light.

Published: 22nd August 2017 10:30 PM  |   Last Updated: 23rd August 2017 08:05 AM   |  A+A-

Relatives carry a child at the Baba Raghav Das Medical College Hospital where over 70 children have died. (File | PTI)

Express News Service

LUCKNOW: As soon as the high-powered probe committee led by UP chief secretary Rajiv Kumar submitted its report into the reasons for the death of over 30 children at Baba Raghav Das Medical College in Gorakhpur to chief minister Yogi Adityanath, additional chief secretary of Medical Education Anita Bhatnagar Jain was removed from her post here on Tuesday.

Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath had formed the committee on August 12 to probe the incident, a day after deaths of scores of children in the state-run BRD Medical College came to light.
Jain was transferred as deputy general of training, a relatively humdrum assignment for her as she has always been in the hustle and bustle of it.

Highly placed sources said, the axe may also fall on director general of Medical Education, KK Gupta. Having received the probe report by the chief secretary late Tuesday evening, the state government has also ordered the lodging of FIRs against half a dozen officials and top authorities of BRD Medical College.   Sources said, the report also indicted the supplier of liquid oxygen responsible for irregularities, which led to the tragedy.

Meanwhile, in a late night development, three FIRs were lodged in Hazaratganj police station in the state capital Lucknow. The first one was lodged under sections dealing with corruption, second under sections dealing with negligence and the third was lodged against those who were found indulging in private practice.

While principal Dr RK Mishra of BRD Medical College and Liquid oxygen supplier — Pushap Sales — were named in the first two FIRs on the accusations of corruption and negligence, Dr Kafeel Ahmad was named in the third FIR for doing private practice.
It may be recalled that principal Dr RK Mishra was put under suspension and Dr Kafeel Ahamd was divested as nodal officer of encephalitis ward on the second day of the tragedy.
However, cabinet minister,  Medical education, Ashutosh Tandon was spared. Tandon is the son of BJP veteran Lalji Tandon.

A total of 30 infants admitted to the state-run facility had died in a span of 48 hours, allegedly because of the disruption in oxygen supply due to pending payments to the supplier, a charge stoutly refuted by the state government.
The government has maintained that the children died due to different illnesses, including Japanese Encephalitis (JE) and there was no shortage of oxygen.

The situation had left the CM red faced as he had visited the medical college just 24 hours before the tragedy. Even PM Modi had taken cognizance of the major lapse and sent two union ministers to Gorakhpur to assess the situation.
The chief secretary, according to sources, had based his report on the findings of the four-member panel under him and also on the magisterial report ordered by Gorakhpur DM Rajiv Rautela and a report filed by the doctors sent by the PM.

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