Expressing concern over high infant mortalities at the only pediatrics hospital in the Valley, Peoples Democratic Party on Thursday sought Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's intervention in ensuring basic health care facilities in Jammu and Kashmir.
The Prime Minister should take serious note of the "unfortunate" development that has affected hundreds of families in Kashmir, PDP president Mehbooba Mufti said in a statement in Srinagar.
She said Central government and the Congress leadership, as coalition partner in Jammu and Kashmir, owed it to the state to ensure at least bare minimum health facilities and find out how funds in this sector are actually spent.
"If we lose 359 children in four months at the hospital that runs as the only facility in the Valley, where else can they be treated safely and what is the purpose of having such institutions?" she asked.
Mehbooba said the fact that such a grave tragedy took place in the capital city's only hospital for children should serve as an index of what must be happening in rest of the state.
Demanding compensation for kins of the victims, she said unless responsibility was fixed and action taken against the "merchants of death", such catastrophes would always take place.
"No probe would serve any purpose unless the government developed respect for human life and ensured that the health programmes were implemented with sincerity," she said.