P. Veerappa is a resident of this tiny village in Alladurg mandal, about 60 km from the district headquarter town of Sangareddy.

While the entire village was busy with the election campaign on Friday, the family of Veerappa was silently grieving the death of their 17- year-old daughter, Mogullamalla Umarani, who was married last year.

The situation in the family of M. Nagaraju, husband of Umarani, staying just a street away in the same village, was not much different.

Along with his 50-year-old mother Anjamma, he was facing a serious crisis as his wife had died within one year of her marriage.

Shifted to hospital

Umarani was shifted to a private hospital in the district headquarters on March 26 when she was seven months pregnant and died the next day of a complaint of high blood pressure.

Minor

Though her parents and in-laws claimed that the girl was above 18 at the time of her marriage, the school records suggested that she had been born on July 3, 1997, indicating that she was a minor at the time of her marriage.

After she conceived, she was given nutritious food from the anganwadi centre except for a month when food was supplied from home.

Though she was asked to come to the centre and take daily diet, her family members never bothered to do this.

Contradictions in report

Umarani’s medical records suggested that she suffered with low haemoglobin count but no proper care was taken by her kin to overcome this problem.

Similarly, there was a contradiction in the reports about the status of the foetus.

“She could have been alive today had she got proper medical attention. Being illiterate, we depend on doctors and we feel that proper treatment was not extended to her,” Mr. Veerappa told The Hindu.

“This is a system failure where the departments concerned failed to properly assess the seriousness of the high risk case and respond in time. At the same time, if her family members had attended the MAARPU meetings at the village level and followed the norms the mother as well as child could have been saved. We need to go a long way to streamline the system but we are working with commitment towards this,” said an official in the medical and health department.