In the wake of uproar over fresh crib deaths in a state-run hospital in Malda district, West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee on Thursday virtually rejected the criticism of doctor's neglect and said the state lacked proper medical infrastructure.
Countering criticism from the Opposition and a section of the media over the fresh crib deaths in Malda Sadar hospital, Banerjee said, "Out of the seven babies that had died, two were brought dead to the hospital and the rest were brought in a moribund condition".
The chief minister hit out at the erstwhile Left Front government and said the problem was "hidden" elsewhere.
"The state lacked proper medical infrastructure because of the previous government's utter neglect with 40,000 children dying every year", she said.
"Infant mortality needs to be looked at very seriously. It is sad that seven children have died in Malda...... There has been canard when we are trying to improve the health infrastructure, which has been left in shambles by the previous government", she said.
"As per records, the infant mortality rate in the state is 40,000 per annum. We have been able to bring down the infant morality rate by two percent in the past seven months and we will be able to bring it down to 25 percent", she told a party rally in Kolkata.
The Mamata Banerjee-led Trinamool Congress-Congress government came to power in the state in May 2011 ousting the Left Front after 34 years of uninterrupted rule Left Front since 1977.