Bhubaneswar, October 17 (LocalWire): Rejecting the state government’s inquiry report in a case related to administration of expired de-worming medicines to children in November 2014, the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) has asked the Odisha chief secretary to explain why the commission should not ask the state to pay Rs ten lakh compensation for each of the 36 impacted children.
In a reply to the earlier notice by the NHRC, the Health and Family Welfare Department commissioner-cum-secretary had stated that expired medicines were not used at the session site and none of the children of Behula village of Garadpur block who received Albendazole in November 2014 were treated in the OPD or IPD at the Ptkura CHC.
The report by a Joint Enquiry Team also stated that, “…the alleged medicine with the expiry date of June 2014 was not supplied for the said programme but for the previous rounds.”
Rejecting the health department report, the Commission observed it was in contradiction of the earlier report submitted on 3 February 2015 that said out of 27 Albendazole administered on 5 November 2014 at Behula village six vials were found to have expired.
It may be recalled that 36 children had fallen sick after being administered de-worming medicine at a government-run camp in Behula village of Kendrapara district on 5 November 2014 and the preliminary report had revealed that the de-worming doses had expired in June 2014.
The rights panel had taken up the matter after a complaint by the rights activist Akhand in November 2014.
“The Commission arrives at the conclusion that human rights of children of village Behula under Garadapur Block of Odisha’s Kendrapara district have been violated and they are entitled to the monetary compensation/relief for which the state of Odisha is vicariously liable to pay for the acts of its employees,” the NHRC show cause notice stated.