The National Human Rights Commission has taken suo moto cognizance of the various medical reports across the country due to “deficiencies and inadequacies in the healthcare system.” This came as a result of the recent 100 deaths in Bihar. The commission, on Thursday, issued notice to the Union Health and Family Welfare Ministry (UHFWM) and all the States and Union Territories over the deplorable public health infrastructure in the country.

Data analysis of reports of World Health Organisation (WHO), World Bank and UNICEF, and its comparison with statistics for Muzaffarpur district shows that when it comes to the nutrition of child and mother, most African countries perform better than Muzaffarpur.

“The Commission has observed that large number of deaths of innocent people including women, children and elderly persons, are taking place due to lack of proper medical care, infrastructure, manpower and due to administrative failure, across the country,” NHRC said in a statement. “The Commission has reminded the Central/State Governments of their constitutional duty under Article 21 of the Constitution under which Right to Life is guaranteed. Quoting the Supreme Court of India, the Commission has observed that right to live with human dignity is part of Right to Life. Referring to the widespread malnutrition prevalent in several States, the Commission observed that it is the primary duty of the State under Article 47 of the Constitution to raise the level of nutrition and standard of living of its people, which the Commission observed, the State has failed,” the statement said.

2017 Gorakhpur Child Deaths

The country went into deep shock when the state-run BRD Medical College failed to supply oxygen to children admitted in the hospital. According to the records, as of September 2, 2017, 1317 children had died in the hospital. However, this estimate came into light and shook the nation in August 2018, when 63 children died within two days as the oxygen supply ran out. The major cause of deaths was Acute Encephalitis Syndrome (AES), with 77 children dead because of it in August alone.

Though the deaths were avoidable, lack of oxygen resulted to be a major cause of deaths. The oxygen supply was cut by the supplier due to non-payment of dues.

2019 Muzaffarpur Deaths 

Just after two years of Gorkahpur Deaths, no progress has been made in the field of medicine and nutrition for children. The recent deaths in Muzaffarpur are the best evidence for the same. More than 100 children have died due to Acute Encephalitis Syndrome (AES), while many more are feared to be infected. While both, the state and central government are now paying attention towards the damage that has been caused, reports suggest that Bihar Government has been indifferent till now towards providing child nutrition and proper medical facilities to the children. This has made the area vulnerable to the present scenario.

Data analysis of reports of World Health Organisation (WHO), World Bank and UNICEF, and its comparison with statistics for Muzaffarpur district shows that when it comes to the nutrition of child and mother, most African countries perform better than Muzaffarpur.

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