RANCHI: Two women have died due to starvation in Jharkhand in the last three days, prompting Chief Minister Raghbar Das order a probe.
According to local media reports published on Tuesday, Meena Mushar, 45, died in Itkhori block of Chatra district late on Monday. Her son claimed that she died due to hunger. An autopsy was awaited to ascertain the exact cause.
The woman was a rag-picker. "My mother and I were eking out living by collecting and selling the waste products. There has been no income for last three to four days.
"My mother had eaten nothing for the last four days. Her condition deteriorated on Monday evening and I carried her to hospital on my shoulders.
"Doctors declared her brought death," Gautam Mushar told reporters.
This was the second starvation death in the last three days. On Saturday, Savitri Devi, 65, from Mangargaddi village in Giridih died due to hunger. Villagers said she had not taken any meal over three days.
Neither did Savitri Devi have a ration card nor was she given an old age pension.
She was making out a living along with her daughter-in-law by begging for alms while her two sons had to leave their home state in search of labour.
Although in the past, deaths due to extreme hunger have been reported but the state government has always denied.
But this time around, Chief Minister Das has taken cognizance of the Giridih death and sought a report.
"Autopsies sometimes indicate death due to other causes as hungry people eat poisonous roots and fruits to fulfil their need, leading district administration to deny hunger deaths, " said Kishore Sahdeo, Jharkhand Congress spokesperson to IANS.