The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Drip twist to child death

Cooch Behar, Oct. 30: The death of an eight-year-old girl at Mekhliganj subdivisional hospital for want of a bottle of saline has triggered a blame-game.

The finger-pointing reveals that the life-saving drip was not purchased though the district health administration had the required funds. Inquiries show that the district hospital needed 300,000 bottles of saline annually and only 108,000 units were supplied between April and October. At present, there are around 360 saline bottles in district government hospitals.

While the CPM leadership holds health officials responsible, the latter have pinned the blame on the district magistrate’s office. The sabhadhipati of the CPM-controlled Cooch Behar zilla parishad, Ananta Roy, has asked the district chief medical officer of health to give the reasons for the crisis.

“Despite the state health department blacklisting two saline manufacturers after they reportedly sent stocks of expired bottles to the SSKM hospital this month, a Rs 12-lakh contract was given to them to supply saline bottles to the five subdivisional hospitals before Durga Puja,” Roy said.

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