Cong observes Burla bandh, demands judicial probe into infant deaths

Sambalpur/Bhubaneswar: The Burla town wore a deserted look on Monday due to the 12-hour Burla bandh call given by the Congress party demanding judicial inquiry into the tragedy in which nine newborn babies died at the Special Newborn Care Unit (SNCU) of VSS medical college and hospital within a span of 24 hours.

The activists staged demonstration at different strategic points of the town and forced shops to down their shutters by picketing. To press their demand the agitators also burnt tyres at different traffic points bringing the vehicular communication into a grinding halt.

“In the state infants are not safe. Health minister must resign on moral grounds taking responsibility for the death of the infants,” Simantini, an angry Congress activist said.

All government offices including schools and colleges and business establishments were found closed due to the day-long strike. The district administration however said that the bandh was peaceful.

Adequate police forces were deployed at different sensitive zones apprehending any untoward situation.

A similar situation was also witnessed at the state capital when the BJP gheraoed the official residence of the health minister demanding his resignation on moral ground.

“The VSS medical college is certainly ill­­-equipped. If the health minister does not resign, we will intensify our agitation across the state,” said Amiya Das, a BJP leader.

Meanwhile, the three-member probe team headed by DMET director submitted its report which ruled out any lack of treatment at the hospital.