Questions on Gorakhpur Tragedy That Nobody Has Answers To Yet

Unanswered questions surrounding the Gorakhpur tragedy make it “a thriller with cascading angles”.

Updated16 Aug 2017, 07:34 AM IST
Politics
3 min read

Journalist Neelesh Misra, the founder of Gaon Connection, took to Twitter on Tuesday to raise a set of important questions about the Gorakhpur tragedy.

At least 63 children have died in the state-run Baba Raghav Das Medical College in Uttar Pradesh’s Gorakhpur, the parliamentary constituency of Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, in the last one week. According to reports, the probable causes of deaths are shortage of oxygen supply in the pediatrics ward and encephalitis.

Misra started a Twitter thread by saying that the story of children's death in Gorakhpur is “becoming a thriller with cascading angles”.

Here is a comprehensive list of unanswered questions, surrounding the Gorakhpur tragedy.

1. INOX and Linde Gas are reputed companies supplying liquid oxygen to hospitals including two of Lucknow’s biggest hospitals, KGMC and SGPGI. However,

(a) The Gorakhpur Hospital chose Pushpa Sales to buy oxygen that the supplier BOUGHT FROM INOX. Why not buy it straight from INOX?

(b) I asked around. INOX and Linde NEVER pay kickbacks to officials. Is that why an intermediary was created for years?

2. Why did the Gorakhpur Hospital continue with the same oxygen vendor, Pushpa Sales, for years?

3. Did the UP health minister, Principal Secretary, DG Medical Education not receive the panic letters on payment or were they ignored?

Letter sent from Pushpa Gas regarding payment delay to BRD Medical College.
Letter sent from Pushpa Gas regarding payment delay to BRD Medical College.
(Photo Courtesy: Twitter/@NeeleshMisra)

4. Why was the UP CM's office misled into tweeting immediately after the new spate of Gorakhpur deaths to deny oxygen shortage as a cause? Because if the govt had declared that there was no link of the deaths with Oxygen, why was an inquiry ordered at all?

5. Then-hospital head Misra: Steps were taken to get enough cylinders. Dr Kafeel called a hero for "going to get" 3 cylinders. Who is lying? With 23 dying, why did Dr Kafeel leave the ward in a crisis to do a chore (getting cylinders) someone else could do?

Dr Kafeel Khan
Dr Kafeel Khan
(Photo: Youtube Screengrab)

6. DG Medical Education told Gaon Connection that payment was transferred on 5 August. Why didn't the Principal pay the supplier immediately for oxygen?

7. If an inquiry had been ordered by the UP Govt, why were Principal Misra and HOD Dr Kafeel fired without waiting for its findings?

Questions on Gorakhpur Tragedy That Nobody Has Answers To Yet

8. Principal Misra could have averted oxygen crisis by paying Rs. 1.25 cr available under other heads. Why did he block it?

9. Why have the health minister and medical education minister not been taken to task? Why are they deciding who is guilty?

10. How will it be determined if oxygen shortage caused the children's deaths? Were their fingertips and lips blue?

11. Why did the hospital administration force parents to leave with their dead kids in the middle of the night? What were they hiding?

12. Will Chief Secy Rajiv Kumar's inquiry travel to villages of the dead children to get to the truth of what really happened that night?

13. Will bodies be exhumed? What will the inquiry be based on? (Bodies of infants are not cremated under Hindu tradition).

14. Why did Principal Misra and Dr Kafeel not raise the issue of the oxygen crisis when the CM reviewed the hospital on 9 August?

15. Why did the #Gorakhpur DM not react to news reports of impending oxygen crisis in @JagranNews and @AmarUjalaNews ?

16. Why has the responsibility of the UP National Rural Health Mission Head not been fixed over this entire crisis?

17. Is it just a coincidence that the night the oxygen crisis happened is also the night of a surge in children's deaths?

(This thread was first published by the author as a Twitter thread. The author is a journalist and founder of Gaon Connection, a rural platform.)

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Published: 16 Aug 2017, 05:56 AM IST
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