New Delhi 22 June 2019: The Social Democratic Party of India, (SDPI), is deeply grieved at the deaths of more than 100 children due to encephalitis in Muzaffarpur district of north Bihar. The party while condoling the deaths has charged that the apathy of the state administration has aggravated the tragedy.
SDPI national general secretary Mohammad Shafi in a statement has said that if precautions were taken by the authorities hundreds of children would not have died. Malnutrition is a big issue in our country. Everyday a child or an adult dies because of malnutrition. Hospitals are also not in a good condition and because of this people are not getting proper treatment. Authorities should not have waited for an incident like this to happen and should have taken some precautions. Right to the meal and nourishment is the right of each and every adult and child. If any person or child is dying from malnutrition then this means that authorities are not serious with their responsibilities.
Shafi pointed out that the repeated occurrence of such tragedies in India is due to the apathy of the bureaucracy who still views themselves as colonial masters rather than public servants. The politicians are either part of this disease or they are incapable of pulling up these bureaucrats. Don’t our doctors know a way to counter such a basic thing as hypo-glycaemia? During this season, free distribution of glucose packets with supplements could also be a solution to prevent any casualty. Secondly, the state of primary health centres and sub-centres is abysmal and these deaths have occurred due to this criminal lacuna/gap. The Health Minister of Bihar should resign on this count alone and make way for a more caring successor.
He said that it is unambiguously clear that Bihar despite the hype surrounding its rapid development and improved standard of living under Nitish Kumar administration has still a very long way to go to get rid of his unflattering “BIMARU” status. That more than seventy years of independence and an Indian Administration hasn’t been able to ensure even the basic amenities to its citizens is a sordid tale which cannot be glossed over. It should inspire us to learn the right lessons as to where our development paradigm is going wrong and what steps can be taken to make it more inclusive, especially in the critical sectors of quality education and health. India is lagging behind even some of the sub-Saharan African countries and that is unenviable humiliating.
Shafi charged that health strategy failed due to lethargic state policy as well as central health agencies. A simple infusion of 10 per cent dextrose could have saved a number of causalities. Shafi told that both the central and state governments are responsible for the loss of more than 100 lives.