The Gorakhpur tragedy and its aftermath

Death of children in Gorakhpur hospital: file response to plea, High Court tells UP government

Scene inside a ward of the encephalitis centre, at the state-run BRD Medical College Hospital in Gorakhpur.   | Photo Credit: V.V. Krishnan

The Allahabad High Court on Friday directed the Uttar Pradesh government to explain and present before it the findings of its probe into the death of children in BRD medical college in Gorakhpur,

While it is alleged that the 30 children died due to disruption of oxygen supply in the hospital on August 10 and 11, the government has dismissed the claim.

Hearing a bunch of five PILs seeking high-level probes into the Gorakhpur hospital incident, a division bench of Chief Justice D. B. Bhosale and Justice Yashwant Varma directed the U.P. government to file a counter affidavit stating what it had done and found in the matter so far.  

The court fixed the next hearing for August 28.

In a related development, the Lucknow Bench of the Allahabad High Court also directed the Yogi Adityanath-led state government and the Director General of Medical Education, UP, to file a counter-affidavit within six weeks to a PIL filed by Lucknow-bases social activist Nutan Thakur. A Division Bench of Justices Vikram Nath and Daya Shankar Tiwari passed the order after hearing Ms. Thakur, UP Advocate General Raghavendra Singh and Medical Education counsel Sanjay Bhasin.

The advocate general opposed the petition saying that the State government had taken every possible measure in the matter and shall take all possible actions as per the report submitted by the Chief Secretary.

In her plea, Ms. Thakur sought a judicial inquiry into the deaths of the children arguing that the chief secretary-level probe ordered by the Yogi Adityanath government would be an “eyewash,” as “the Chief Minister and various Ministers have already formulated their opinion about the matter to be enquired and have made it public in clear terms.”

Saksham Srivastava, one of the petitioners in the Allahahad High Court, had prayed for a court-monitored time-bound CBI probe into the deaths of the children. The court said it would wait for a “satisfactory” answer from the State before considering the demands for higher-level probes, said Mr. Srivastava.

Meanwhile, Samajwadi Party president Akhilesh Yadav alleged that that “corruption” was the reason behind the shortage of oxygen supply in the BRD hospital and demanded a probe by a sitting judge of the Supreme Court.

Mr. Yadav also suggested that along with the other probes, the Central Bureau of Investigation also probe the matter. “This government has a lot of attachment with the CBI. The CBI is also under them. Along with other investigations, there should also be CBI probe into this matter," the former chief minister told reporters here.

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Printable version | Apr 16, 2021 2:37:42 PM |

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