Jharkhand: 40 schoolchildren fall ill after consuming Saraswati Puja ‘prasad’

Lohardaga (Jharkhand): In a shocking incident, about 40 students fell severely ill after consuming Saraswati Puja ‘prasad’ at a school in Jharkhand’s Lohardaga district on Sunday. According to reports, a doctor at the local hospital said two of the 40 students are critical. 

As per details received by the media, the doctor of Sadar hospital, said that a case of food poisoning is suspected.

“So far 40 children have come here. One or two are in a critical condition. It is a case of food poisoning, we are treating them accordingly,” Dr SS Khalid of the Sadar Hospital, was quoted by ANI as saying. The doctor also added that most of those who fell sick are six or seven years old.

The children supposedly started vomiting within hours of eating the sweets, which were distributed after the puja. The organisers claimed that nothing seemed amiss with the ingredients that went into making the sweets, at the time when they were bought.

The district’s education department has launched an investigation into the matter. “The administration is investigating, we will take action against whoever is found guilty. We will get the food sample examined to find out the cause,” the report quoted the District Education Officer of Lohardaga, Ratan Mahwar, as saying.

In December 2018, nearly 150 people fell ill after they consumed prasad at the Sulavadi Kichchugutti Maramma temple. Fifteen of them were killed while others were undergoing treatment at a city hospital. A total of four accused have been arrested, including Mahadeshwara Hill Saluru Mutt seer Pattada Immadi Mahadevaswamy, in connection with the food poisoning incident.

(With inputs from Agencies)