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Maharashtra hospital fire: BJP questions delay in filing FIR, asks whom govt is protecting


BJP MLA Ram Kadam said an inquiry report had also been submitted and wondered if the government was trying to shield someone by not filing the FIR or the accident death report.

Ten newborns were killed in a massive fire at the Bhandara District General Hospital in Maharashtra (Photo: India Today)

The BJP on Friday lashed out at the Maharashtra government for not registering an FIR nearly two weeks after a fire killed 10 newborns in Bhandara district general hospital. BJP MLA Ram Kadam said an inquiry report had also been submitted to the administration and wondered if the government was trying to shield someone by not filing the FIR or the accident death report.

“It’s been more than 13 days that no FIR has been registered by state government in the Bhandara Hospital fire incident in which 10 infants died. The state govt earlier said they are waiting for Divisional Commissioner’s report on this fire. Now, it’s been more than two days the report is with govt. What have they done? No FIR no ADR? Whom they are protecting?” Kadam said.

Calling the case “equivalent to murder”, the BJP leader told India Today TV that responsibility had to be fixed and the government cannot just pass the buck.

“The responsibility has to be fixed somewhere. This isn’t a case of natural deaths. This is equivalent to murder. The hospital had asked for fire fighting equipments which were never provided by the government. Now the report too has been submitted. So what’s the issue in registering FIR,” he said.

While SP Bhandhara refused to speak on the matter, calls to the district collector went unanswered.

The development comes a day after the Uddhav Thackeray-led government suspended Bhandara district surgeon Dr Pramod Khandat, medical officer Dr Archana Meshram, nurse Jyoti Bharaskar and paediatrician Dr Sushil Ambade. Additional district surgeon Dr Sunila Bade was transferred to a non-executive post.

Earlier this week, Nagpur Divisional Commissioner Sanjeev Kumar submitted an inquiry report into the fire incident to the state Health Secretary. Sources in the inquiry panel told India Today TV that the unfortunate incident could have been avoided if there was promptness and coordination on the part of hospital staff.

The team led by Kumar found that a baby warmer in the ward first caught fire owing to a short-circuit. This led to smoke engulfing the entire Newborn Care Unit, resulting in the death of seven kids due to suffocation. The other three infants died as a result of burn injuries.

READ | 10 infants killed in fire at Maharashtra hospital


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