Shahdol (Madhya Pradesh): A case under the Juvenile Justice (Care and Protection of Children) Act (JJ Act) has been registered against the woman healer who performed branding on a 3 month old girl in Shahdol, on Sunday.
The victim girl died after alleged ‘daagna’ (branded with hot iron rod) took place in village Kathautiya under Singhpur police station of Shahdol district on Saturday night.
The victim was allegedly branded 24 times in the name of treatment and was taken out of her grave on Friday for conducting post-mortem.
ASHA workers suspended, several block officials transferred
The district administration swung in action after the incident came to light and terminated the services of ASHA worker and ASHA assistant. The administration also transferred the sector medical officer, block education and extension officer, lady health visitors (LHV), BPM, block community mobiliser, two community health officers and two RBSK medical officers of Sohagpur block.
Additionally, a show cause notice has been served to the block medical officer, YK Paswan.
'Awareness campaigns needed to prevent such incidents', says collector
"As soon as the incident was reported, I got in touch with the doctors. They said that the reason for her death was acute pneumonia. Such malpractices have been reported in Shahdol for a long time. The administration has been making every possible effort to put an end to such malpractices. However, despite such efforts, some incidents do take place. We will ensure that such incidents are not repeated," Shahdol Collector Vandana Vaidya said.
Earlier, the Collector said holding more awareness campaigns was the only way to prevent such incidents.
Another case in Samtapur
The collector further added that another similar incident has been identified in which the parents of a child of Samtapur village had shifted their ailing child to a private hospital. Before shifting the child to a private hospital, the parents had taken her to a healer and branded her.
Earlier, the kid was admitted to a government hospital.
When the parents were asked about branding their child, they claimed that they did not take the help of the healer. However, the administration is keeping an eye on the case.
In order to prevent such incidents, the collector informed that a team of doctors including chief medical and health officer Dr Ramsnehi Pandey, immunisation officer, official of women and child welfare department Shalini Tiwari and others visited the affected villages of the district.
NCPCR takes cognisance
Meanwhile, the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) chairperson, Priyank Kanoongo said he had taken note of the incident and a notice was being issued to the local administration to ensure strict action in the matter.
"We have been receiving complaints from MP that a child was branded with a hot iron rod in the name of treatment. The Commission has zero tolerance for such practices and takes strict action against them. We are issuing a notice (to the local administration) and will ensure that strict action is taken against the guilty," Kanoongo said.
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