Pradeep Pattanayak

As many as 34 girl students of a government high school in Sundargarh district were taken ill after having pakhala (fermented rice) and fried potato. 

All the students are undergoing treatment at K Balang government hospital.

According to a source, the hostel inmates of Soyamba Government Girls’ High School under Koida block were given pakhala and fried potato yesterday. 

After a while, the girls first complained of stomach pain. Later, they had bouts of vomiting and diarrhoea. The school authorities immediately shifted the students in an ambulance to K Balang government hospital. A total of 32 students were shifted in the night and the following morning. Later, two more students were shifted. 

School authorities put the blame on soaring temperature and the doctor treating them suspected heat wave, polluted water, or contaminated food to be the reason. 

“Those who are undergoing treatment at the hospital are out of danger. A team from the hospital visited the hostel. Heat wave, contaminated water, or food is doubted to be the reason. We have chlorinated all the water sources at the hostel,” said Koida CHC medical officer, Dr. Nagarjuna Gagarei. 

When contacted, the headmaster in-charge of Soyamba Government Girls’ High School said, “The students complained of stomach pain and diarrhoea. We doubt heat wave to be the reason behind this.”

Notably, the girls’ hostel of Soyamba Government Girls’ High School is managed by the Integrated Tribal Development Agency (ITDA). The hostel houses a total of 240 inmates.

  • Reported by:
  • Sunil Panda