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Times of India
23 August 2010
Bindauva (Mohanlalganj), Naigeria

Pall Of Gloom Descends On Villages Of Deceased Kids In Mohanlalganj
ANM Usha Verma with health ministry officials at the Mohanlalganj CHC on Sunday ANM Usha Verma with health ministry officials at the Mohanlalganj CHC on Sunday
Though two families in this village lost their children during the immunisation programme, the entire village is in a state of mourning. On Sunday morning, when the bodies of Sahil and Rekha reached the village, their parents were inconsolable.

Sahil’s father Indrapal blamed the auxiliary and nursing midwife (ANM) for his son’s death. ‘‘She was confused... she gave my son some wrong vaccine,’’ he told reporters. Asked why he blamed the ANM, Indrapal said: ‘‘She called up someone to ask which injection to administer... then she injected one of the two injections she held in her hand... and hardly 15 minutes after this, my son fainted.’’

Rekha’s mother Kanti too blamed the ANM. ‘‘Behanji (the way an ANM is addressed in a village) mari hain hamri bitiya ka (ANM killed my daughter)," she said, adding that the ANM was the one who administered the vaccines.

The ANM in question, Usha Verma, who administered BCG and hepatitis B vaccines to Sahil and Rekha, however, dismissed the charges. Talking to TOI she said, ‘‘I administered vaccines to other children too.. nothing has happened to them... how can the authorities blame me.’’ She added that there is no blot on her career.

‘‘I have been working since 1976... I have been giving vaccines to children in Bindauva for past 15 years. The incident is extremely unfortunate and worse is that god made me an instrument of his ill–will,’’ she said as tears rolled down her eyes.

In the neighbouring village of Padmin Kheda, villagers demanded action against the health officials, holding them responsible for the incident. Under the aegis of the Bhartiya Kisan Sabha, angry villagers kept the body of the girl near the Panchyat Bhavan demanding higher compensation.The kanungo and other village level officials intervened to control the situation.

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