The NHRC has sent a notice to the Karnataka government over reports that three people have died and 35 others have been hospitalised due to gastroenteritis after allegedly consuming contaminated water at Maidolalu village of Shivamogga district. The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) has issued the notice to the chief secretary of the state, seeking a detailed report in four weeks. “The NHRC has taken suo motu cognisance of a media report that as many as three persons have died and 35 others have been hospitalised owing to acute astroenteritis at Maidolalu village in Bhadravati taluk of Shivamogga district of Karnataka,” the rights panel said in a statement.
Reportedly, the district health officer has said that the consumption of contaminated piped drinking water is suspected to be the reason behind the outbreak of gastroenteritis. The piped drinking water is supplied by the gram panchayat. “It has observed that the contents of the news report, if true, raise serious issue of violation of right to life and health of the victims, as drinking water is the basic amenity and the state is bound to ensure its uncontaminated supply,” the statement said. As per the news report, the water samples have been collected from two overhead tanks in the village and from the houses of the patients.
“These have been sent to the laboratory for examination. The residents have, reportedly, expressed their anguish that the water tanks are not cleaned regularly. It is further mentioned that a similar outbreak of gastroenteritis was reported from the same area in 2017,” the NHRC said.