Sterilisation Death: Brinda Karat Blames WHO

A week after 13 women died in the sterilisation tragedy in Chhattisgarh, CPI-M leader Brinda Karat on Wednesday alleged that the World Health Organisation (WHO) was equally responsible for the botched up sterilisations in the state since the government programme was being funded by the organisation.

"Sterilization programme in Chhattisgarh was being funded by the WHO and it needs to be questioned where the money was being spent," Karat said. "Why doesn’t WHO ask for the audit report from the government about the manner in which fund was being spent? It has the right to know whether the standard of hygiene was being maintained," Karat added.

Karat was accompanied by other women activists who demanded the resignation of the Chhattisgarh health minister.

A mass sterilisation camp organised in the state a week ago had paved way for a tragedy and witnessed the deaths of 13 women among 83 women who has been operated here.

Dr RK Gupta is a 59-year-old surgeon, who was honoured by the Chhattisgarh government this year in January for accomplishing a massive target on mass sterilisation in the state-run campaign. After the tragic incident, he has been arrested after he was detained in Baloda Bazar district.

However, Gupta had claimed that he is innocent and said, "I am innocent. The health of the women deteriorated owing to the sub-standard drugs prescribed to them following the sterilisation surgery.” He has also blamed the government for failing to control the number of people turning up at the sterilisation camp.

He said, “It is up to the administration to decide how many women would be kept for operation.” Justifying his part, he claimed, "If they kept in that place 83 women, it is my moral responsibility to operate (on) all the women. If I decline to do that I would have faced public agitation."

Meanwhile, while there was allegation that the equipments used in the surgeries were rusted, Gupta denied that his equipment was rusty or dirty. Regarding the allegation that the “rusted equipments” have been used, a team of doctors from AIIMS hospital has reached the place for further probe into the incident.

However, after the incident, the government has taken initiative to ban the bathes of drugs that has been used in the surgeries and all drugs have been sent to a Kolkata laboratory for tests and analysis.

(With inputs from IANS)

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