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50 girls ill after dinner at hostel

Ranchi, July 14: Around 50 girls staying at the hostel of a Chainpur-based school fell ill after eating dinner in Gumla last evening in an incident that drew sharp reactions from the state HRD and health ministers who directed the district administration to take prompt action in the matter.

The students — all 15-16 years old and studying at St. Anne’s Girls High School are undergoing treatment at the nearby mission hospital, where their condition is stated to be improving.

Nevertheless, Gumla deputy commissioner (DC) Veena Shrivastava ordered an inquiry into the incident.

While a team of doctors, led by additional chief medical officer J.P. Sanga, is monitoring the treatment, administrative officials are busy questioning the school authorities and the hostel staff.

Speaking to The Telegraph over telephone from Gumla, Sanga said the girls were served a curry of jackfruit and potato along with rotis in the dinner last night. “After having the food, the girls started vomiting and complained stomach pain and giddiness. It seems contaminated oil was used in preparing the curry,” said the ACMO.

Sanga added that all the students were out of danger now and their conditions were improving steadily.

Soon after the news broke, HRD minister Geetashree Oraon and health minister Rajendra Prasad Singh contacted the district officials and took stock of the situation.

While Oraon promised appropriate action against the school authorities once the inquiry report arrived, Singh directed the district civil surgeon to ensure best possible medical care for the girls.


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