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Inquiry committee formed to probe Ahmednagar hospital fire that killed 11 Covid patients

Speaking to the media, Union minister Bharati Pawar said action will be taken against the guilty. The fire broke out Saturday in the ICU unit of a hospital in Ahmednagar, Maharashtra.

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Pune: An inquiry committee has been constituted to find out the cause of the fire that killed 11 COVID-19 patients in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) of the Ahmednagar district civil hospital in Maharashtra, Union minister Bharati Pawar said on Saturday.

After visiting the hospital in the afternoon, the Minister of State for Health and Family Welfare said a total of 17 patients were admitted to the ICU for COVID-19 treatment.

“After the fire broke out, these patients were shifted. However, 11 patients lost their lives. I condole these deaths. I have met six patients who are undergoing treatment and their relatives. An inquiry committee has been appointed. Once the committee files a report, the picture will become clear,” she told reporters.

Responding to a query, Pawar said the Central government sends instructions regarding the fire safety audit (to hospitals) regularly.

“We are awaiting reports. Accordingly, action will be taken against the guilty,” she said.

A senior fire officer had said that a short circuit was suspected to be the cause though it was yet to be confirmed.

Also read: 25 Covid patients die, 60 more at risk Delhi’s Sir Ganga Ram Hospital, due to oxygen crisis

Maharashtra Energy minister orders probe

Maharashtra Energy Minister Nitin Raut on Saturday ordered a detailed inquiry into the Ahmednagar civil hospital fire, in which at least 11 coronavirus patients were killed, and warned of strict action against those found guilty.

He said the electricity department’s inspection team has reached the hospital and it will start its probe after the police panchnama.

Taking to Twitter, Raut said the Ahmednagar civil hospital fire incident was “very unfortunate”.

“I have ordered a detailed inquiry into this incident. Meanwhile, electricity inspection department has reached the incident spot. The inspection team will start its inquiry after the police panchnama is completed,” he said.

Strict action will be taken as per rules against those who are found guilty after the inquiry, he added.

The fire broke out in the intensive care unit (ICU) of the civil hospital in Ahmednagar city around 11 am on Saturday, when around 20 coronavirus patients were undergoing treatment there.

Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray has directed the district collector to carry out an in-depth inquiry into the tragedy.

Also read: Global Covid deaths hit 5 million even as vaccines slash fatality rate


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