HomeIndiaTeenage Singer’s Death Highlights Sorry Tale of Health Sector in Assam’s Majuli;...

Teenage Singer’s Death Highlights Sorry Tale of Health Sector in Assam’s Majuli; Probe Launched

It’s a sombre milieu at Baruah’s residence at Dariyagaon of Majuli, the river island district of Assam. The house, which used to reverberate with the renditions of young talented Tejaswita Baruah’s in her recently built audio studio, remains numb today.

Almost 18 hours after the death of the budding singer and student of standard nine in Island Academy of the island district, Assam Minister for Health and Family Welfare Keshab Mahanta reached Pitambar Deva Goswami civil hospital at Garmur where the teenager breathed her last to take stock of the situation. He visited the Baruah family to stand beside the bereaved ones in their time of loss.

“A detailed study of the facilities in the civil hospital shall be done in the presence of the Managing Director of National Health Mission and Director Health Service. We have three gynaecologist for caesarean deliveries, however we need to recruit specialists here. There are 48 GNM and out of them four trained in Assam Medical College. One anaesthesiologist shall be recruited soon. There is dearth of doctors and vacancies needs to be filled soon. For general surgery too, we have discussed to equip the hospital. We, however, have specialist for medicine. Initially professors from medical colleges visited the civil hospital to train the surgeons,” Mahanta highlighted.

It was on October 4, the 574th birth anniversary celebration of Saint Srimanta Sankardev that Tejaswita collapsed while performing borgeet in the Dariyagaon Namgharh (place of worship). This was in the afternoon when she was immediately rushed to the civil hospital at Gormour the district headquarters of Majuli. After battling for life in the hospital for about two hours, Tejaswita breathed her last.

“She used to get sick sometimes at home but got well after we gave her medicines. This time she was admitted, and I own up that I got late by 10 minutes to take her to the nearest and the best available hospital in Majuli. The nurse checked her BP, I am not aware of the reading. She was shaking terribly and we have never seen her trembling like this before. The nurse was not able to inject the needle for the drip. She was put on two drips while she was drooling in her oxygen mask. The mask too was not completely throughout, can’t say why. The nurse did not understand Assamese and therefore we could not communicate. She wrote on a chit for a medicine which we got,” said a cousin bother of Baruah.

“A lady doctor was there who left in the middle, another lady doctor joined us. A CT study was supposed to be done. I checked myself and could feel that my sister was not breathing anymore. We yelled for the nurse, the doctor or for some help which could make my young sister breath again. It was too late. Can’t say who’s fault but definitely there was lapses and serious ones at the hospital.”

As per the preliminary report, Baruah was brought to the hospital at 2:45 pm with a complaint of continuous seizure and was immediately given treatment by the attending doctor. Two specialist doctors attended her. According to doctors, she had a history of cardiac problem since childhood and was not continuing with her medication.

“There was no scarcity of oxygen in the hospital. Two doctors out of one who is a specialist in medicine treated her and the doctor informed confidently that she has handled may such cases before. However, in this instance Tejaswita never responded to medicines of the line of treatment adopted. There are five ICU bed and five Oxygen bed in the Pitambar Dev Goswami Civil Hospital however availability of specialist doctors is a concern. We don’t have a radiologist and most doctors appointed in the island hospital fail to turn up. This is a serious concern. The cause of the death and the alleged negligence part is being investigated,” informed Pullock Mahanta, Deputy Commissioner Majuli Assam.

The opposition Congress blamed the government for the death of a budding talent of the state. Congress claimed that it’s a crime of a heinous nature.

“It’s a sad incident. We demand a thorough investigation into the incident. Only constructing building in the name of hospital and having no doctors serving them is a futile exercise of the present government. Why wasn’t she shifted to the ICU’s when all the five were vacant?” said Rana Goswami, Working President Assam Pradesh Congress Committee.

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