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NHRC issues notice to UP Govt for Death of five-year-old Agra girl due to starvation

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National Human Rights Commission in suo motu cognizance sent a Notice to Yogi government for death 5-year-old girl who allegedly died due to starvation and ill health in Agra district of Uttar Pradesh.

The Commission issued  notice to the Chief Secretary of Government of Uttar Pradesh and asked a detailed report within 4 weeks including the relief and rehabilitation provided to the family by the administration and the action taken against the delinquent officials. The Chief Secretary is also expected to issue instructions to all the district authorities to ensure that such incidents of cruelty and negligence should not recur in future.

five-year-old girl, Sonia, has reportedly died  in Nagla Vidhichand village of Barauli Aheer block in Agra due to hunger.

Agra administration claiming that she died of diarrhea and fever, and not of hunger, it has now provided about 100 kilograms of ration to the deceased girl’s family.

Sheela Devi, the mother of the deceased girl, told India Today TV that she is a daily wage labourer and her husband has a respiratory illness and cannot work.

During the lockdown, she could not work and for one month, and they did not have anything to eat. Their neighbours helped them for 15 days, but after that, the family had nothing to eat for at least one week, and the girl fell sick and suffered from fever.

With no money left to buy medicine or food, Sheela Devi could not save her daughter, who died on Friday.

Sheela Devi said she does not have a ration card, because of which there was not any ration at home. Meanwhile, Torrent Power disconnected her electricity connection as she was unable to pay a bill of Rs 7,000.

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Although the Agra administration claims that she died of diarrhea and fever, and not of hunger, it has now provided about 100 kilograms of ration to the deceased girl’s family.

Sheela Devi, the mother of the deceased girl, told India Today TV that she is a daily wage labourer and her husband has a respiratory illness and cannot work.

During the lockdown, she could not work and for one month, and they did not have anything to eat. Their neighbours helped them for 15 days, but after that, the family had nothing to eat for at least one week, and the girl fell sick and suffered from fever.

With no money left to buy medicine or food, Sheela Devi could not save her daughter, who died on Friday.

Sheela Devi said she does not have a ration card, because of which there was not any ration at home. Meanwhile, Torrent Power disconnected her electricity connection as she was unable to pay a bill of Rs 7,000.

This is a serious issue of violation of human rights due to gross negligence by the local administration. It is for the local public servants to honestly implement the schemes, so that the poor and needy can avail the benefits which , apparently was not done in this case. Had the authorities been sincere and vigilant, loss of a precious human life could have been averted. The State cannot escape its liability and there is a need to fix the responsibility of the public servants who have not acted in accordance with the law to help the aggrieved family.

Reportedly, the girl was living with her parents and sister at Nagla Vidhichand village in Agra’s Baroli Ahir block. The family was without any work for about a month and in recent weeks the family went without food. Many families in the localities like them do not have a ration card. The five-year-old girl Sonia had become weak and had fever for three days. She could not bear the pain and succumbed to illness and hunger on Friday night.

The local authorities reportedly did nothing to help the family-like securing food in the lockdown-induced crisis. The District Administration has said it will find out where things went wrong and they have taken cognizance of the matter and an investigation has been ordered into the child’s death. Further, the Agra Administration said that the family has buried the body, which they should not have done as a postmortem would have ascertained the cause of death.