Ranchi: Two women have died due to starvation in Jharkhand in the last three days, prompting Chief Minister Raghbar Das order a probe.
Meena Mushar, 45, died in Itkhori block of Chatra district late on Monday. Her son claimed that she died due to hunger. An autopsy was awaited to ascertain the exact cause. The woman was a rag-picker.
“My mother and I were eking out living by collecting and selling the waste products. There has been no income for last three to four days. My mother had eaten nothing for the last four days. Her condition deteriorated on Monday evening and I carried her to hospital on my shoulders.”, son claimed.
This was the second starvation death in the last three days. A 58-year-old woman allegedly died of starvation in Dumri area of Giridih district on Sunday. The deceased has been identified as Savitri Devi.
It is alleged that due to the negligence of authorities the ration card of the woman could not be made, which is why she was unable to get ration. The same incident happened in the last year. An 11-year-old girl in Jharkhand’s Simdega district has died of starvation after her family’s ration card was cancelled because it was not linked to their Aadhaar number.
Santoshi Kumari, who came from an impoverished family in Simdega’s Karimati village, died on September 28. With no school mid-day meals available during her Durga Puja holidays, Santoshi Kumari had gone with barely any food for nearly eight days before she died, they said.
Similarly, A 30-year-old woman died in Pakur district in Jharkhand on January 23, after being denied ration for four months under the public distribution system (PDS) due to the failure of Aadhaar-based biometric authentication, according to the Right to Food Campaign, Jharkhand.
Due to the negligence of authorities, Savitri Devi died. “Due to negligence of authorities, her ration card could not be made, which is why she was unable to get ration. Action will be taken against the culprits,” Sheetal Prasad, MO Dumri said.
After the death of her mother in law, Saraswati Devi said that the request for a ration card was made a number of times but no one paid heed. “They were only able to eat after begging people for food. Request for ration card was made a number of times but no one paid heed,” she added.
This is the eighth alleged starvation death in Jharkhand since 11-year-old Santoshi Kumari died crying for rice in Simdega district in September, according to the Right to Food activists who have been independently investigating these deaths.