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Noida village deaths not due to mysterious fever, says probe panel

noida Updated: Aug 27, 2016 23:09 IST
Vaibhav Jha/Pawan Pandita

A man shows the photograph of his 21-year-old son who died in Sarfabad village.(Burhaan Kinu / Hindustan Times)

Health department officials concluded on Saturday that the deaths in Sarfabad village near Noida sector 73 did not occur due to a mysterious viral fever.

A total of eight people died in the last 15 days in Sarfabad.

The health department on Friday said six out of eight deaths occurred due to ailments such as tuberculosis, heart attack, liver failure and cancer. The remaining two deaths were suspected to be due to viral fever.

On Saturday, the health department constituted a committee headed by chief medical officer Dr Vijay Deepak Verma to probe the deaths. It came to the conclusion that none of the reported deaths occurred due to viral fever.

When confronted about the suggestion of two deaths, the CMO said that in the absence of any medical reports in respect of the two victims, it was difficult to pinpoint the cause of death.

“However, it is certainly not any viral fever. Let me tell you that fever is a symptom and not a disease. No viral fever has been reported to have caused death in one day. The cause of death could be septecemia. The two victims are 21 and 60 years old. Other causes of sudden death, such as myocardial infarction or heart failure is not a possibility because of their age and medical history,” he said.

Dr Verma said the inquiry committee doing the death audit came to the conclusion that the deaths could be caused due to septecemia but said a question mark hung over it as it was not too sure about the exact cause of death.

The health department set a camp on Thursday for the free check up of suspected patients in the village.

“This is the third day that we sent samples from the village to the hospitals. But none of them are be infected with dengue,” said Verma.

The recent report by the health department did little to soothe the villagers who accused the government of brushing the matters under the carpet.

“There are families where all the members are burning with high fever. The situation of the village has not improved at all and the risk of another person dying from high fever still remains,” said Sukhbir Pahalwan, a resident.

Later in the day, Union minister and Gautam Budh Nagar MP Mahesh Sharma visited Sarfabad and criticized the administration of apathy towards the villagers.

Read: Noida: Govt downplays mystery fever deaths, locals disagree

“The situation of sanitation and cleanliness is very poor in the village. There is no proper health center or dispensary in the village. I will speak to the administration about these issues to get it fixed. Also, I will do whatever I can from my end to improve the situation of cleanliness in the village,” said Sharma.

The Noida Authority has directed the health department to clean the drains, sewers and collect the waste twice a day from the village.

“Our teams are visiting the village every day to keep track of the situation in the village. We have asked the health department to pick waste from the village twice a day. Earlier, we used to pick waste once a day. Fogging will also be done so that any chances of viral infection can be terminated,” said Arun Vir Singh, additional chief executive engineer, Noida Authority.

However, the villagers of Sarfabad accused the authority officials of inefficiency, saying that the cleaning of drains and sewers were seldom being done in their locality.

“It is only after we raised hue and cry and media reported the deaths that the officials sent workers to clean the drains. Earlier, our roads used to be flooded with dirty water from the drains,” said Harsh Yadav, a resident of Sarfabad.