Death of 7-yr-old girl of Ashram school kicks off controversy

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Thane, Jul 27 (UNI) The death of a seven-year-old girl, studying in an ashram school in the predominantly tribal Dahanu taluka of the district under mysterious circumstances, has kicked up a controversy with locals demanding action against the erring officials.

Giving details of the incident, President of the State Unit of women's cell of the BJP, Manisha Chowdhary told UNI today that Akshata Arjun Belkar (7) was studying in class two in Kanzarwadi Ashram school at Dahanu Taluka of the district. Yesterday, she complained of pain in the ear and was taken to the Kasa Primary Health Centre, where she was treated and given medicines. Later she returned to the ashram school.

''However, the child began feeling uncomfortable again and started discharging white fluid from her mouth. After sometime, she also started vomiting blood and her father Arjun Belkar rushed her to the Kasa PHC once again, for treatment at about 2000 hrs. But at about 2100 hrs, the child was declared dead possibly due to food poisoning in the hospital itself,'' Ms Chowdhary said.

The doctors at the hospital, who conducted post mortem on the child's body, have sent the vicera to the JJ Hospital for further tests to determine the exact cause of the death, she said.

Ms Chowdhary, who visited the hospital and the school this morning, has expressed unhappiness over the way in which ashram schools in the district, were being managed. Last year, at least five children from the ashram schools in Dahanu had died, and a suo-moto case in this connection is still pending in the Mumbai High Court, she added.

She also demanded that action be taken against the Superintendent of the Kanzarwadi Ashram School, Sadhana Takale, Head Master Milind Dhange and the Project officer Mr Shelke of the Dahanu Division.

UNI XR SR SW VC1740

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