Ensure no child dies due to malnutrition or State health secretary will be put to notice: Bombay High Court to Maharashtra government
On Monday, the Bombay High Court ordered the Maharashtra government to ensure that no child in the state dies of malnutrition, and warned that if the Court discovers any such incidence, it will notify the State Health Secretary (Dr. Rajendra Burma & Anr. v. State of Maharashtra & Ors.).
A bench of Chief Justice Dipankar Datta andJustice GS Kulkarni was hearing a slew of public interest litigation (PIL) petitions from Melghat region residents in Amravati district, alleging starvation.
Since 2007, when the PILs were filed, the Court has directed the State Departments to ensure a cooperative effort to combat hunger in the region.
The State government was ordered by the Bench on Monday to send professional doctors to the Melghat region and other tribal regions to guarantee that children do not die of malnutrition.
The Bench also cautioned the Secretary of the State Department of Health that if there are any more deaths due to starvation in the next two weeks, he will be put on notice.
Senior Advocate Jugal Gilda, speaking on behalf of petitioner Dr. Rajendra Burma, claimed that children and expectant mothers in the Melghat district, as well as other tribal regions nearby, were not receiving enough medical care.
He told the court that the problem had gotten worse after the COVID pandemic. If adequate measures are not implemented, 900 more children could perish.