Harsh Vardhan named in Bihar children deaths case

The Union Minister for Science & Technology and Earth Sciences, Dr. Harsh Vardhan chairing the Brainstorming sessions with Senior Officers and Scientists of the Ministry of Earth Sciences, in New Delhi on September 19, 2016.

Harsh Vardhan named in Bihar children deaths case

Patna: A case was filed on Monday against Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan and Bihar Health Minister Mangal Pandey in a court in Muzaffarpur district on charges of negligence leading to the deaths of 82 children due to Acute Encephalitis Syndrome (AES) in the past fortnight.

Social activist Tamanna Hashmi filed the case in the Muzaffarpur Chief Judicial Magistrate’s (CJM) court on Monday.

The petition said that Harsh Vardhan and Mangal Pandey failed to fulfill their duties to control the outbreak of AES, while both had done nothing to create awareness and sensitise people in the affected areas despite the fact that AES had been killing children for years.

The court has fixed June 24 for hearing the case.

Hashmi said that he has filed the case against the accused, Harsh Vardhan and Mangal Pandey, under 323, 308 and 504 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC).

“Large number of children died due to negligence and lack of infrastructure to give them timely proper treatment”, he said.

Harsh Vardhan, accompanied by the Union Minister of State for Health Ashwani Kumar Choubey and the Bihar Health Minister, visited the state-owned Sri Krishna Medical College and Hospital in Muzaffarpur on Sunday.