The Gorakhpur tragedy and its aftermath

Gorakhpur hospital deaths: Born after eight-year wait, dead in eight days

Anara Devi shows the death certificate of her grand children.   | Photo Credit: V.V. Krishnan

Suman and Brahmadev Yadav, a couple from Baghagada village in Gorakhpur had been trying for eight years to have a child. And finally on August 2, Suman gave birth to twins at the district hospital, much to the joy of their families.

However, their happiness was shortlived as both babies died within eight days after being shifted to the Baba Raghav Das Medical College on August 3.

The death certificate issued by the hospital for the infant girl says she died of “cardio-respiratory failure”. The family did not get a death certificate for her twin brother, who died on August 9, Brahmadev’s mother, Anara Devi says.

“The babies were born normal, but then soon developed a fever. They were sent to the medical college and none of us saw them alive after that,” says Anara Devi, pulling out a plastic box with the death certificate, medical bills and prescriptions.

Anara Devi doesn’t know if her grandchildren were among the over hundred patients affected by encephalitis because hospital authorities did not tell the family what happened.

Not informed

“We had been asking since August 7 to give us our children back. We heard that they were being given oxygen and then died when the oxygen stopped. Since we are not educated and are poor, no one explained to us what happened,” she says.

On Monday, Samajwadi Party leader and former Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav was supposed to visit the Yadavs but had to cancel the trip due to incessant rain that made the mud paths to the village impassable.

“All we can say now is that my son should get some help. At the least, the government can make roads in the village,” says Anara Devi.

Holding the only photos of her grandchildren ever taken, she says the family had bought sweets and was planning to celebrate their birth when they would have been discharged from hospital.

But the children never came home.

“We were going to decide their names when they came home,” says Anara Devi, as she sits beside the plastic box of memories.

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Printable version | Apr 20, 2021 12:45:19 AM |

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