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30 children, including newborns, die in India hospital

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30 children were reported dead in a span of 48 hours

At least 30 children died since Thursday in Gorakhpur's Baba Raghav Das Medical College amid allegations that a private contractor stopped supplying oxygen cylinders as the government-run hospital hasn't paid dues of about Rs 70 lakh.

A statement issued by the office of state chief minister Yogi Adityanath, which has ordered the inquiry, said that all 60 deaths had occurred at the hospital's paediatric ward over a five-day period starting last Monday.

After over 30 deaths due to encephalitis in Gorakhpur's Baba Raghav Das Medical College, kin of children allege that there is discrepancy in treatment.

"This incident took place due to the laxity on the part of the state government". "AMBU (Artificial Manual Breathing Unit) bags were used to supply oxygen to the patients after cylinders too ran out of supply, " he added.Singh said a high-level committee, to be headed by the state chief secretary, had been formed to probe the matter.

"The opposition is not indulging in politics but there is a difference between what the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) says and what it does", Akhilesh said.

Before leaving for Gorakhpur, Health Minister Singh said, "The chief minister was not informed by the doctors and officials about shortage of oxygen on August 9".

For the unversed, as many as 64 lives have been lost so far due to alleged disruption in the supply of liquid oxygen in the hospital.

Neonatal and encephalitis wards are reported most deaths.

"All the reports that have come in the media, even the Prime Minister Narendra Modi is upset with them", Yogi said, adding that PM Modi said that the Centre Government will provide whatever aids the Uttar Pradesh government needs to strengthen the health sector.

The Uttar Pradesh government denied the deaths were caused due to shortage of oxygen, claiming alternative arrangements for oxygen supply were made. 3000 odd deaths are among 50000 children that got killed in eastern Uttar Pradesh over the past three decades. According to reports, 12 children were suffering from encephalitis.

City magistrate V K Srivastava said: "Many acute cases are referred to the hospital and on an average 10-11 kids die daily".

Stating that the exact toll was not available with the opposition, Yadav said, "We have received information that as the children were dying, their families were being taken out of the hospital in a hush hush manner". They will visit the hospital after their meeting. The chief minister, who refrained from taking responsibility for the tragedy, held sanitation issues and open defecation as responsible factors for death.

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