New Delhi, August 13: The Polit Bureau of the Communist Party of India (Marxist) has issued the following statement:

The Polit Bureau of the CPI(M) strongly condemns the gross negligence of the UP State Government and authorities of public health that has led to the death of 63 children so far due to the shortage of oxygen supply. This is impermissible.

The arguments doled out by the UP state government and the Chief Minister attributing these deaths as not due to the shortage of oxygen but bad sanitation and civic conditions is unacceptable. Warnings of oxygen shortage have been given for some years now and the non-payment of dues to the oxygen suppliers appears to be the main cause.

Blaming sanitary conditions for these deaths speaks volumes for the much tomtomed swach Bharat campaign of the Prime Minister and the BJP. Further, the UP CM has himself represented Gorakhpur constituency for the last twenty years in the Lok Sabha. His contribution for the neglect of hygienic conditions cannot be overlooked.

The CPI(M) Polit Bureau demands a high level judicial enquiry be instituted to establish the culpability, beginning with the Chief Minister and the state government, followed by stringent punishment of the guilty.

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