NEW DELHI: The National Human Rights Commission has issued a notice to the Chhattisgarh government and sought a detailed report within four weeks on the death of three newborns at a government hospital in Raipur, allegedly due to disruption in oxygen supply.
"Police have arrested the oxygen plant operator, who was found drunk on duty (on Sunday night)," the NHRC said today.
Referring to the death of more than 60 children at a hospital in Uttar Pradesh's Gorkahpur hardly two weeks ago, it said, "In both the cases, human error and negligence, reportedly, became the cause of deaths."
"It seems that nothing has been learnt from that tragedy.
A death, whether of an infant, child or of a grown-up person, causes irrevocable loss to the families. No probe, amount of monetary relief and punishment to the culprits can compensate the loss of a human life," the rights panel said in a statement.
The NHRC has taken cognisance of the reports and issued the notice to the chief secretary of the government of Chhattisgarh, seeking a detailed report in four weeks.
"The commission is of the opinion that suitable effective measures are required to be taken to address such problems.
There is a need for issuance of suitable instructions to all government-run and private hospitals to ensure that such lapses do not occur, it said.
Accordingly, the commission has directed the Secretary, Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare to take up the matter with every state and union territory so that these kinds of distressing incidents could be checked.
"The response from the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare is expected within four weeks," the statement said.
Three newborns had died in the neonatal intensive care unit of Ambedkar Hospital in Raipur on August 21 with their relatives alleging disruption in oxygen supply.
However, the charge was denied by Chhattisgarh health officials.
The state Health Secretary although admitted that "the level of oxygen in a few cylinders was found to be low".
"Reportedly, the chief minister of Chhattisgarh has ordered stern action against those found guilty for the incident," the NHRC said in the statement.