"There were children who were admitted in natal ICUs and there were deaths due to AES [Acute Encephalitis Syndrome] and some were non encephalitis-related deaths", the state's Health Minister Sidharth Nath Singh told the India Today news channel. What followed was complete chaos as panic-stricken relatives of patients ran for help, and with the support of hospital staff tried to maintain supply of oxygen. using artificial manual breathing bags.
In response to the accusation made about dues to be paid to the company supplying oxygen cylinders, he said that there had been an alternative arrangement of 50 oxygen cylinder that was put to use.
Though District Magistrate Rajiv Rautela told reporters in Gorakhpur that seven children died in the last 24 hours, but a news agency twitted quoting the DM that 30 children had died of Encephalitis in the last 48 hours.
As many as 63 children have died since the past six days as the oxygen supply to the company was allegedly cut by the supplier - Pushpa Private Limited.
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Ace cricket veteran, Virender Sehwag, expressed grief over recent children's deaths due to encephalitis in Gorakhpur. "The role of oxygen gas supplier who was allocated the job during the previous government will also be investigated".
"We were not rushed here to conduct any inquiry as the state government is already doing that".
Dubbing the Gorakhpur Hospital deaths as "extremely painful", Bahujan Samajwadi Party (BSP) Chief Mayawati on Saturday strongly condemned Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) for the 64 tragic deaths.
Earlier, the UP government said that stringent action will be taken against those found guilty in the high number of death of infants in Gorakhpur's state-run BRD Medical College.
Stressing that patients come to the hospital from neighbouring districts of the state, Bihar and even Nepal, he said, "like any other medical colleges in the country, these patients come in the last or final stages, as the first line of treatment centres are unable to treat them properly". Immediate action has been demanded by her against all those responsible for the very bad incident.
According to the government, 60 deaths have taken place in the hospital during past five days.
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