STF looking into Nagada deaths: CM

Bhubaneswar: Voicing serious concern over the malnutrition deaths in Nagada village in Jajpur district, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Thursday said the state government had formed a Special Task Force (STF) to look into the issue.

Talking to newsmen, Patnaik said, “The task force will also see that such incidents do not recur.”

Meanwhile, Agriculture director PK Meherda and Principal Secretary, Agriculture department, and State Task force nodal officer Manoj Ahuja visited the Kaliapani hospital and enquired about the condition of 19 malnourished kids undergoing treatment. Later they visited Tala Nagada area.

Notably, as many as 18 children have allegedly died of malnutrition in the last three months in the mining area.

Nagada is situated on a hilltop in a dense forest under mineral-rich Sukinda block. Located about 30 km from Sukinda chromite valley and more than 50 km from Kalinga Nagar Industrial complex, there is virtually no road to the village.

Even for basic necessities, the villagers have to trek more than 15 km through a dense forest to reach a motorable road, sources said.