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High number of infant death in Kashmir a matter of shame: Azad

Press Trust of India
May 19, 2012 at 08:55pm IST

Srinagar: Union Health Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad on Saturday said the high number of infant death at GB Panth children Hospital in Srinagar was "a matter of shame".

"It is unfortunate and a matter of shame that such things happen in a state capital. One could understand if it had happened in some remote area," Azad told reporters in Srinagar.

Over 360 infants have died at GB Pant hospital, the only paediatric hospital in the valley, since the beginning of this year.

Infant deaths in Kashmir a matter of shame: Azad

Ghulam Nabi Azad said it was the duty of the state government to construct the hospital as health care was a state subject.

The Union Minister, who was in Srinagar to attend the delegate session of JKPCC, said he will be visiting the hospital on Sunday to take stock of the situation.

Azad said he had sanctioned 200-bed hospital for children to be constructed near the Haj house at Bemina soon after taking over as the health minister in the Centre.

"During my tenure as Chief Minister, I had kept 50 kanals (2.5 hectares) of land for a hospital. I sanctioned funds for the hospital soon after taking over as Health Minister," Azad said.

He said it was the duty of the state government to construct the hospital as health care was a state subject.

The state government has ordered an inquiry into the reasons for high infant mortality rate and transferred the Medical Superintendent of the hospital.

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