More than 200 schoolchildren, who had assembled here to celebrate Bihar Diwas, fell ill children after consuming food and water supplied to them.
The three-day event commenced on Tuesday in Gandhi Maidan in presence of Chief Minister Nitish Kumar. Schoolchildren were invited from across the state.
I.S Thakur, the medical superintendent of Patna Medical College and Hospital (PMCH), confirmed the incident. Ten children have been admitted to the hospital since Thursday morning and their condition is stated to be stable.
“The children are complaining of diarrhea, nausea and abdominal pain. The medical teams of the hospital are taking care of them. They are recovering well. The children belonged to different districts and had come to Patna,” Thakur said.
Apart from food poisoning, dehydration could be another reason for the incident, the medical experts believe.
The students, however, claimed that the food and water supplied to them were having bad quality. Even the water bottles supplied to them were inadequate.
“We have been accommodated in BN college which comes under Patna university. The accommodation facilities are very bad. We thought that the food would be hygienic and from reputed hotels. Unfortunately, it was not the case. The food was prepared in the college and its quality was not good. Moreover, we were given 15 bottles of water among 11 students and a teacher. How could we survive in such a high temperature,” said a teacher who comes from Madhepura district.
“I did not have the food but the majority of my schoolmates did. They were complaints of nausea, stomach ache, and upset stomache. It indicates that the meals provided to us were not hygienic,” a girl student of Madhepura said.
“Also, the management of the BN college forced us to vacate the college as an examination was scheduled for Thursday. Now, we have been shifted to a makeshift tent shelter,” she added.
Following the incident, Patna district administration has deployed a team of doctors at the makeshift shelter.
The doctors present at the makeshift shelters confirmed that more than 200 students are having health issues.
“The students have been suffering from stomach ache, nausea, stomache upsets since Wednesday night. As the temperature is also soaring in Patna, the dehydration problem cannot be ruled out,” a medical officer said, requesting anonymity.
“Treatment have been provided and they are recovering well,” he said.
Sanjay Mayukh, BJP MLC took up the incident in Bihar Legislative Council and demanded proper treatment for the students.