NHRC takes serious view of death of 11 children in Rajasthan
Article141.png”” alt=””Article141″” />Taking a serious note of the death of 11 children with special needs in a rehabilitation home in Jaipur, the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) has issued notices to the State Chief Secretary, Director General of Police and Director General of Health Services and sought a reply within two weeks. Taking suo motu cognizance of the incident, the Commission has observed that the contents of the press reports, if true, raise a serious issue of human rights violation of the child victims. As many as 11 children have died in a State-run Home in Jaipur, under mysterious circumstances in the past 12 days.
Allegations of governmentâ€™s failure in maintaining the upkeep of the Home have also been reported as the reason behind the incident. Reportedly, the children were referred to J.K. Lone and SMS Hospitals when their condition deteriorated, probably after drinking contaminated water at the Home, the NHRC said in a statement. Meanwhile, there is outrage in the State over the deaths with the womenâ€™s groups and civil society organizations demanding the resignation of the Social Justice Minister Arun Chaturvedi.
Three children from the home are still admitted in the ICU of J.K.Lone, one is recuperating in the General Ward while eight others were discharged after treatment. The Rajasthan Health Minister Rajendra Rathore visited the hospital and enquired about the health of these children. Describing the episode as unfortunate, the civil society groups have said that the government had not only kept these children with mental retardation in sub-humane conditions but was also guilty of violating the directions of the Rajasthan High Court which in 2003 had asked the State to ensure all such homes should have adequate facilities for good food and other facilities including a provision for a clinical psychologist.
Expressing surprise that the State Child Rights Commission, the State Human Rights Commission and State Child Welfare Committee were silent on these deaths, the civil society groups have said that all these people had also lost the moral right to continue on their posts. The joint statement was issued, among others, by Peopleâ€™s Union for Civil Liberties, National Federation of Indian Women, All India Janwadi Mahila Samiti, National Muslim Womenâ€™s Welfare Society, Beti Zindabad Abhiyan, and Centre for Advocacy and Research.”