Delhi starvation death: Congress accuses AAP, BJP of ‘criminal neglect’

Our Bureau New Delhi | Updated on July 26, 2018

Delhi Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia and an official meet the mother of the three girls who allegedly died of malnutrition at Mandawali, in New Delhi   -  PTI

Delhi BJP President Manoj Tiwari meets the mother and a relative of the three girls who died allegedly of starvation in Mandawali area, in New Delhi on Thursday   -  PTI

The ‘system has failed’ to protect the poorest of the poor, says Delhi Deputy CM Sisodia

The shock of three hunger deaths in the heart of the Capital were followed on Thursday by the Congress, which was in power for 15 years in Delhi before it was swept away by the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) in 2015, accusing both the BJP and AAP Chief Arvind Kejriwal of “criminal neglect”. AAP has ordered a magisterial inquiry into the shocking deaths.

Three young girls, all below 10 years – Mansi, Paro and Sukho – were brought to Delhi’s Lal Bahadur Shastri hospital by their mother, Bina, on Tuesday morning. They were pronounced dead on arrival and the autopsies confirmed that they had died of starvation. The family lived in a slum in east Delhi’s Mandawali area. The girls’ father, Mangal, is a rickshaw-puller and the mother, who also fell unconscious in the hospital, reportedly the police said that she had not eaten for several days. A second autopsy is believed to have been ordered but the preliminary post-mortem report said that the girls died due to “malnourishment/starvation and its complications”.

Delhi Pradesh Congress Committee (DPCC) chief Ajay Maken went to the family’s home in the Mandawali slum cluster and said he had found that they were living in Delhi for the last 15 years. While saying the incident was “unfortunate”, Maken raised questions about how, in the Capital city, the family did not have access to Public Distribution System with no ration cards or access to the Mohalla clinics that the AAP government has been running.

“These deaths are a slur on all of us. They raise a lot of questions. How did the family not have a ration card, why did they not have access to these canteens that the local government is supposedly running, how could they not approach the Mohalla clinics?” asked Maken.

Deputy Chief Minister of Delhi Manish Sisodia too was at the spot with officials. He said the “system has failed” to protect the poorest of the poor in the country.

“Our system has failed. I have sought a report from ICDS (Integrated Child Development Services) that were these people on our records? if yes, then why these girls were not helped?” said Sisodia.

He said the Delhi government has provided immediate financial aid to the family and will make sure that the mother gets treated in the hospital.

Delhi BJP President Manoj Tiwari meets the mother and a relative of the three girls who died allegedly of starvation in Mandawali area, in New Delhi on Thursday   -  PTI


Financial aid

“We have given immediate financial aid of ₹25,000 and their mother will be admitted to hospital. We will make sure that she gets the best treatment. Once their father returns we will provide more financial help,” Sisodia said.

The Congress MP Deepender Singh Hooda blamed the Centre and the Delhi government for the starvation. He said the two ruling parties cannot “wash their hands” of the incident.

“It is unfortunate that Delhi being the Capital of one of the most powerful countries of the world, has had to see starvation deaths. It is absolutely unacceptable. Both the governments, the Kejriwal government in Delhi and the Modi government, are responsible,” Hooda told reporters.

Published on July 26, 2018

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