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2-month-old Girl Victim of Bhandara Hospital Fire Was Set for Discharge

Police officers investigate the scene after a fire broke out at District General Hospital in Bhandara, about 70 km from Nagpur, on January 9, 2021. (AP Photo)

Police officers investigate the scene after a fire broke out at District General Hospital in Bhandara, about 70 km from Nagpur, on January 9, 2021. (AP Photo)

A baby girl who had brought joy to Geeta and Vishwanath Behere (22), despite being born underweight at a private hospital on November 10 last year, was one of the 10 infants who died after a fire broke out in the childcare unit of the state-run Bhandara district hospital in the early hours of Saturday.

The gloom in the Behere household in Sonzari Tola in Bhandara's Bhojpur area and the pain in the eyes of the people assembled there, especially in that of a 20-year-old tribal woman, is unbearable. The baby daughter of the Beheres was supposed to be discharged in eight days from the Bhandara district hospital, but the fire tragedy has turned their world upside down.

ALSO READ: Bhandara Hospital Fire: 3 Babies Succumbed to Burns, 7 Suffocated to Death, Says Maha Health Minister

A baby girl who had brought joy to Geeta and Vishwanath Behere (22), despite being born underweight at a private hospital on November 10 last year, was one of the 10 infants who died after a fire broke out in the childcare unit of the state-run Bhandara district hospital in the early hours of Saturday. The child was 830 grams when she was born and her stint at the Special Newborn Care Unit, to which she was shifted on the day she was born, was having a positive effect on her health and she was supposed to be discharged in eight days, a sobbing Vishwanath said.

"Her weight had increased to 1.3 kilograms and a nurse had told us that our baby would be discharged when she weighed 1.5 kilograms. Geeta had got to see the infant at 4 pm yesterday and today we get the news of the fire. It has destroyed us," he said. "We had not even named our daughter and now we have got her burnt dead body," Vishwanath, who is a labourer, said amid the wails and sobs from those present, including his homemaker wife.

READ ALSO: Probe Ordered in Bhandara Hospital Fire, Guilty Shall Not be Spared: CM Uddhav Thackeray

The girl was cremated after the couple left the hospital, he said, adding that no one had communicated anything so far about compensation for their devastating loss. Geeta, meanwhile, was too traumatised to speak, with kin and neighbours assembled around her to offer comfort.


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