In view of the Gorakhpur tragedy in Uttar Pradesh that claimed many infants lives, BJP leader Varun Gandhi on Monday pledged Rs 5 crore for a new paediatric wing in his Sultanpur constituency’s district hospital.
He also hoped that other MPs would follow suit.
Over 65 children died in the Baba Raghav Das Medical College within seven days in Gorakhpur, the hometown and parliamentary constituency of Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath.
“The human tragedy… has jolted me,” Gandhi said.
“While grieving the terrible loss of lives of all the children, the incident must act as an impetus to take actions that serve as a deterrent against a reoccurrence of such an event,” he said.
Gandhi represents Sultanpur in the Lok Sabha.
“After speaking to the Chief Medical Superintendent, Chief Medical Officer of Sultanpur district hospital and the District Magistrate, I have pledged an amount of Rs 5 crore from my MPLADs fund.”
He said he wanted a model paediatric wing with state-of-the-art infrastructure in the hospital.
He also said the fund would be accompanied by a matching grant of Rs 5 crore more that would be raised through donations and collections from corporate social responsibility (CSR) funding.
Initially, it was reported that the children died due to lack of liquid oxygen, but Adityanath has insisted that the deaths occurred due to encephalitis and lack of sanitation.
Gandhi hoped the additional funds from external donors would help the Sultanpur hospital’s paediatric wing to be fully functional in the next six months.
He said the new wing would include an in-house research centre that would work on matters of children’s healthcare and prevention of several water and air borne diseases.
Gandhi said the CSR funding would be utilised for purchase of equipment for the laboratories for the wing.
It would provide free vaccination for children under the National Vaccine Programme. There would be a pharmacy within the hospital premises that would provide medicines at a lower cost.
He also spoke about setting up an intensive care unit (ICU) in the hospital.
The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader said there would be three ambulances operating and catering especially to children.
“It is my hope that other MPs who represent rural constituencies will also initiate something similar in their respective areas to ensure our children are taken care of and protected.”