JAJPUR: Barely hours after Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik discussed malnutrition scenario in Odisha with Union Minister for Women and Child Development Maneka Gandhi in New Delhi, two-year-old Manasi Pradhan, the face of malnutrition in Nagada village under Sukinda block in the district, died reportedly of malaria on Friday.Nagada village had hogged the headlines over death of 20 children due to malnutrition in three months last year.
Manasi, daughter of Sadhabani and Dhaneshwar Pradhan, became a household name after a photo of her malnourished body appeared in the media. She was battling with life due to reduced weight and malnutrition but recovered after undergoing treatment at the nutrition rehabilitation centre (NRC).
“Our daughter was running high fever on Wednesday. We admitted her to TISCO hospital at Kaliapani. On performing blood tests, it was found that Manasi was affected by malaria. She died on Friday evening,” said father Dhaneshwar.
The series of malnutrition deaths in Nagada village, located on a hilltop in Sukinda Chromite valley, had sparked outrage in the country after the issue was widely covered in media.Alarmed over the situation, senior officials from the Centre and the State had visited the village and directed the district administration to take necessary steps for development of the village.
The Jajpur district administration had also taken a host of health measures to improve the scenario in the village. However, all the initiatives proved meaningless after the death of Manasi. Despite repeated attempts, Jajpur Collector could not be contacted.