Deaths of 6 Newborns in 12 Hours Rattles Madhya Pradesh Town, Probe Ordered

Shahdol: The state government on Tuesday initiated a probe after a far-flung district in Madhya Pradesh reported deaths of six newborns in the past 12 hours.

On Monday night, four infants admitted to the Special Newborn Care Unit (SNCU) of Shahdol district hospital died. With this, the state government-run hospital has seen deaths of six newborns in the last 12 hours, with the authorities attributing them to pneumonia.

SNCU incharge Dr Sunil Hathgel was quoted as saying by local media that four infants were brought to the hospital in a critical condition but doctors tried their best to save them. Two others suffering from pneumonia too died in the general ward of the hospital.

Public health and family welfare minister Tulsiram Silawat has taken cognizance of the deaths and ordered the district collector and chief medical and health officer to probe into the deaths of infants, a state government communique said.

Panchayat and rural development minister Kamleshwar Patel, who hails from nearby Sidhi district, also rushed to Shahdol and visited the district hospital on Tuesday. After meeting the families of the children, the minister ordered the collector to enquire into the matter.

The health minister, after a review meeting with health officials, ordered enquiry into the deaths of two children at Nayagaon village under Sabhapur police station area. The children were part of seven children who were administered vaccine at Konaita anganwadi a few days ago.

The preliminary report has suggested that the kids died due to blockage in their windpipe from clotting of milk but their parents have alleged that the children died due to vaccination.

(Inputs from Pratik Awasthi, Jabalpur)