Within 24 hours another woman starves to death in Jharkhand

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Ranchi: Forty-five-year-old woman, who made a living as a rag picker, in Chatra district for sometime now, died of hunger on Monday evening. Her son said that, she had been without food for four consecutive days. The mother-son are originally from Gaya, Bihar and for quite sometime they are living in Ithkhori area of Chatra.

This is second death caused by starvation to have occurred within 24 hours in Jharkhand, and ninth starvation death in state in a year.  On Sunday, Savitri Devi had allegedly died of hunger, after having starved for three consecutive days.

The woman rag picker, who had been identified as Meena Mushar, was brought to Primary Health Center, Itkhori, where she was declared dead by the doctors. Her son, Gautam Mushar, who carried his mother on his shoulder to the health centre, said that both he and his mother had not had a morsel of food for the past four days.

Gautam who also scavenges rags to eke out a living said, “For four days, I had been unable earn even a rupee. So, we could not have any food. Since Monday evening, my mother’s health started to deteriorate. But with no money in hand, there was very little that I could do for her.”

However, the in-charge doctor, DN Thakur maintained that the reason for the death could only be ascertained after the autopsy, which is to be conducted on Tuesday.

Circle Officer (CI) Dilip Kumar, however, claimed that the death was probably due to illness. “We have heard that the lady was suffering from tuberculosis,” he said.

A video of the son carrying mother’s on his shoulder has also viral now, which has created panic among the officials.

Former Chief Minister Hemant Soren and Jharkhand Mukhti Morcha (JMM) leader has tweeted about these recent hunger deaths that have occurred within 24 hours in Jharkhand. “It is not just hunger death, but the government silently killing the poor.  How and to whom is Jharkhand’s Chief Minister (Raghubar Das) selling the dream of new Jharkhand? When government is not being able to make food available to the public,” said the JMM leader.

Within a year, nine alleged hunger deaths have occured in Jharkhand. Significantly, in all the previous cases, no autopsy had been performed on the deceased.

It will be interesting to see what the autopsy report reveals when the son of deceased himself is claiming that they have been starving for four days in a row.

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