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JammuDropsy knocks at Jammu; one dies three critical

Dropsy knocks at Jammu; one dies three critical

Date:

RS Gill

Tawi, February 08:  Beware! The infamous Dropsy of 1998-notoriety is back again as it has taken a life of one in prime youth in Jammu. A youth Yash Pal, aged 18, died of suspected Dropsy symptoms in Government Medical College (GMC) Jammu on January 28 while his mother Manisha Devi  42, father Raj Kumar 46 and his younger brother Happy Singh 13 have been struggling for their lives.

Four members of Raj Kumar's family, residents of village Kattal, near Sukrala Tehsil Billawar, were admitted in the GMC Jammu after they were referred to by Sub-District Hospital Billawar in critical condition.

The Medical Superintendent GMC, Dr. Ramesh Gupta confirmed that four members of a family were admitted suffering from Epidemic Dropsy caused by consuming adulterated edible oil. One of them had died while condition of one Manisha Devi is still very critical. He however, said that they have capable doctors and appropriate treatment available at the GMC and other hospitals to deal with such medical conditions if such patients approach in reasonable time.

Inquiries revealed that the family had consumed mustard oil which was locally extracted from home grown mustard after mixing mustard-like-seeds that Raj Kumar brought from Delhi. Raj Kumar does a labour job and he collected those mustard-like-seeds spilled over after unloading/ uploading a truck at Delhi. The entire family have developed multiple clinical disorders like vomiting, diarrhoea, nausea, breathlessness and swelling in the feet.

Their condition deteriorated due to crucial time-lag in trying traditional local quacks for treatment instead of approaching hospitals.

A senior lawyer who hails from the victims' area Billawar and practising at J&K High Court at Jammu, Mr. HC Jalmeria raised a legitimate question as to what was loaded on the truck that was so poisonous, even in a small quantity that Raj Kumar brought in can take one's life. To whom the consignment belonged and where the truckload had gone to and also its end-use. “Any unscrupulous person can spread this fatalist Dropsy epidemic in any area by passing on such oil-seeds look-alikes as genuine mustard oil seeds. The death of youth and sufferings of this family has trail that is to be followed and investigated by mark to be trailed by the investigating agencies upto Delhi and the last destiny of the trucks that carried such seeds.

Inspector Susheel Sharma, SHO Police Station, Billawar confirmed death of a youth of Village Kattal under suspicious condition and an inquest proceedings are under way. “We have taken the samples of the edible oil from the deceased's residence and sent those for Forensic test,” said Sharma adding that if need be they would send a police party to Delhi for further investigation.

Dropsy is an old term for the swelling of soft tissues due to the accumulation of excess water. In medical terms – Dropsy, more often called edema, is the increase of interstitial fluid in any organ. Epidemic dropsy is a clinical state, characterized by edema, resulting from use of edible oils adulterated with Argemone mexicana seed oil.

The Northlines, cautions the state authorities to be vigilant in the matter of edible products as pernicious lives are at stake. Food samples should be regularly taken and people should be made aware about the status of food products available in the local market.

Northlines
Northlines
The Northlines is an independent source on the Web for news, facts and figures relating to Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh and its neighbourhood.

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