Encephalitis Deaths in Bihar: Toll touches 117; social media users target CM Nitish Kumar, other key officials

Patna: The death toll due to Acute Encephalitis Syndrome (AES) touched 117 on Thursday morning in Bihar’s Muzaffarpur district.

As per data, a total of 98 deaths were reported at government-run Sri Krishna Medical College and Hospital while 19 children died at Kejriwal hospital in the district due to the vector-borne disease till 8 am today.

The State Health Society had on Tuesday ordered delegation of more doctors in Muzaffarpur from Darbhanga, Supaul, Madhubani, Samastipur and Sitamarhi districts.

Chief Minister Nitish Kumar on Tuesday visited the SKMCH to take stock of the encephalitis situation. Earlier, Kumar had announced an ex gratia compensation of Rs 4 lakh each to the families of the children who died due to the AES.  

Social media users livid with strong messages targeting CM, others

Social media users are livid with strong messages targeting several key functionaries, including Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, while others have even asked for their resignations.

“Nitish Kumar: A heartless man, a terrible friend, a disloyal ally and an awful Chief Minister,” wrote one user on Twitter.

“Disaster of Health and Education in Bihar. @NitishKumar. CM has time to visit Iftar party but it took 17 days for him to visit the Hospital. No water to drink in Hospitals. No Research yet on the unknown Disease. No beds in the Hospitals. Children dying for the last 10 years,” alleged another user.

Kumar visited Muzaffarpur on Tuesday and following his visit the government commissioned a survey in blocks and villages which reported high death toll to study the socio-economic profiles of the affected families and their living conditions.

Hundreds of angry protesters staged a demonstration against Kumar’s visit to Muzaffarpur.

The protest took place outside the state-run Sri Krishna Medical College and Hospital (SKMCH).