Some 200 Catholic priests, nuns and social activists, marched with banners and lighted candles along a major New Delhi street on Aug. 16 protesting against “negligence” that caused the death of more than 60 children in a government hospital.
“Sad, that many precious lives were lost due to negligence of some people,” said Father Mathew Perumpil, secretary of the Catholic bishops’ office of health.
The deaths occurred at Baba Raghav Das hospital in Gorakhpur district of Uttar Pradesh state amid reports of corruption and allegations that the hospital ran out of medical supplies including oxygen because of unpaid bills.
The deaths were reported between Aug. 7-14, and most happened in the intensive care unit of the hospital.
However, hospital officials told media that encephalitis, and not lack of oxygen, was the cause of the deaths.
The deaths shocked the nation as local media have continued to report about irregularities and nonpayment of bills, accusing hospital officials of corruption. But the government insisted that deaths were caused by encephalitis.
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