National

Kota chief medical officer fails to appear before NCPCR

Maitri Porecha New Delhi | Updated on January 04, 2020 Published on January 04, 2020

BS Tanwar, Chief Medical Officer of Kota district in Rajasthan failed to show up at the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) office in New Delhi in connection with the death of over 940 children in a year at one hospital.

Tanwar was to show up before the commission on Friday and explain in person, the negligence on the part of the hospital authorities. Tanwar failed to keep the date with NCPCR, because he had to remain present at the government-run JK Lon Hospital, as the State Health Minister Raghu Sharma was visiting the site on Friday. The summons was issued under Section 14 of the Commission for Protection of Child Rights Act, 2005, on December 30.

Tanwar has now been issued a second summons to appear before the commission on January 7 and NCPCR has also written to the Chief Secretary of Rajasthan to ensure his compliance.

“In 48 hours, ten children died, and the commission took cognizance of this. We conducted a fact-finding inquiry and the principal of the medical college, superintendent of the hospital, the duty doctors, gynaecologists were called. We tried to understand the reasons for these deaths,” Priyank Kanoongo, Chairperson, NCPCR told BusinessLine.

Kanoongo further said, “There is negligence, because doctors said that kids died of septecemia, and the windows from which the cold air was gushing inside the wards where the babies were admitted were cracked and open. We had summoned the Chief Medical and Health Officer (Tanwar) to the meeting but he did not turn up. Pigs were roaming around and doors as well as windows of the building were broken. They did not give information about the number of ventilators and incubators that have been enlisted in the annual maintenance contract, when are these machines being serviced and so on.”

On being asked about how underlying infrastructure in every district-hospital is crumbling, and the reasons for singling out Kota, Kanoongo said that the hospital authorities have turned a blind eye to administering the hospital. “The superintendent refused to answer questions of hygiene posed to him. When we asked about the cracked windows and the wind affecting kids admitted on the bed, superintendent offered to resign,” he said.

Kanoongo said that the NCPCR intervention is not political in nature. “When the Gorakhpur incident happened, NCPCR team visited the district. In Muzaffarpur, we summoned the State Health Director, we summoned them here and sought a report. Everyone is equal in our eyes,” he said.

Published on January 04, 2020
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