Thirteen poll personnel deployed in this Uttar Pradesh district died following high fever and high blood pressure amid heatwave conditions in the region. Twenty-three others were admitted to a hospital in Mirzapur.

Three more people on election duty died and eight taken ill of suspected heatstroke in Sonbhadra district, a senior official said on Friday.

Dr Raj Bahadur Kamal, the principal of Maa Vindhyavasini Autonomous State Medical College in Mirzapur, told PTI that seven home guard jawans, three sanitation workers, one clerk posted at the Chief Medical Officer's office, one chakbandi adhikaari (consolidation officer), and one peon in the home guard team died. They were on poll duty.

The exact cause of the deaths is being ascertained, he said.

They had high grade fever and high blood pressure when they were brought to the facility, he added.

However, Homeguards Commandant B K Singh said that of the seven deceased jawans, five were on poll duty, while two were on law and order duty.

Medical college principal Kamal said, "Of the 13 casualties, four were brought dead. Of these four, two were homeguard jawans. Of the seven homeguard jawans who died, five succumbed after they were brought to the hospital in a span of 20-25 minutes. The deceased homeguard jawans were in the 50-55 age group."

As of now, 23 people are admitted in the hospital, he said. Of these, one is a Provincial Armed Constabulary (PAC) jawan, one from the fire services and one from the civil police, he said.

"All of them came with high grade temperature. Almost all of them had high blood pressure and high sugar levels. Most homeguard jawans had co-morbid condition. The cause of deaths will be known in the post-mortem report," Kamal added.

Dr Tarun Singh, Superintendent in Chief of Divisional Medical College, Mirzapur told PTI that 23 poll personnel including homeguards were admitted to the hospital. One patient has been referred to Varanasi for treatment.

The region has been witnessing unusually high temperatures over the past few days. Polling is scheduled to be held in Mirzapur on Saturday.

Superintendent of Police (Mirzapur) Abhinandan said in a video message on X, "Lok Sabha elections are to be held on June 1 in Mirzapur district. Polling parties have been dispatched today. During this period, six home guards died tragically. Two of them are from Gonda district. One is from Prayagraj, one from Basti, one from Kaushambi and one from Mirzapur district."

The bodies have been sent for post-mortem, he said and added that their families were informed.

Meanwhile, Homeguards Commandant, Mirzapur, B K Singh was seen enquiring about the wellbeing of the admitted jawans and also comforting them.

"Today, the movement of the polling parties was to be done from Polytechnic. Our jawans have come here after discharging their duties in the six phases of the (Lok Sabha) polls. They were tired. The heat is so intense that even if they drink water and move a few steps, their lips will become dry," he told PTI.

"The jawans could not bear this heat. And all this incident took place in a span of one hour to one-and-half hours. And by then our 6-7 jawans had died."

"Of these, two were from Gonda, two from Prayagraj, one from Basti and two from Mirzapur district. The two homeguard jawans from Mirzapur were on law and order ('shaanti vyavasthaa') duty, and not on poll duty," Singh said.

Singh added that he himself gave ORS fluids to the jawans in the camp, but the heat was intense.

"It has been continuing since April 19 (when the first phase of elections were held)...this is the result of such a tiring journey," Singh said.

Reacting to the deaths of the poll personnel in Mirzapur, Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav demanded the government break its silence and provide relief to the families that have been "ruined due to mismanagement".

He also demanded the government immediately announce a compensation of Rs 5 crore each for the victims' families and provide the best treatment to all the other workers who have fallen ill due to the heat.

In Sonbhadra, the personnel were being dispatched for poll duty from the Polytechnic College in Robertsganj -- Sonbhadra's administrative headquarters -- in the afternoon when 11 of them suddenly fell ill, said District Magistrate Chandra Vijay Singh.

They were immediately sent to the district hospital where Nityanand Pandey (50) and a 35-year-old poll duty personnel died.

According to the district information department (of Sonbhadra), a bus owner/driver Santosh Kumar (55) also died.

The deceased was taking a polling party to the Ghorawal assembly segment when his health suddenly deteriorated and he was sent to the district hospital for treatment, but his condition did not improve.

He was referred to a private hospital where he died during treatment.

Eight poll personnel are undergoing treatment at the district hospital where their condition is said to be serious, said Singh.

While the exact cause of deaths is yet to be ascertained, the district magistrate said the symptoms appeared to be that of heat stroke.

Singh said the exact cause of the deaths will be known after post-mortem.

Mirzapur and Sonbhadra Lok Sabha seats will vote in the seventh and final phase of Lok Sabha elections in the state on June 1 (Saturday).

(Except for the headline, this story, from a syndicated feed, has not been edited by staff)

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