Are Children & Lactating Mothers Being Given Nutritious Food In Tribal Melghat Area? Bombay HC Asks State [Read Order]

Are Children & Lactating Mothers Being Given Nutritious Food In Tribal Melghat Area? Bombay HC Asks State [Read Order]

Is nutritious food being distributed to children and lactating mothers in the tribal Melghat area, the Bombay High Court sought to know on Tuesday.

The order was issued by a Bench comprising Justice Naresh H. Patil and Justice G.S. Kulkarni, taking into account a chart submitted before it by Government Pleader Mr. A.B. Vagyani, indicating the number of camps held in Melghat, which is situated in Amravati district of Vidarbha region.

The Court was further assured that such camps would regularly be held in order to provide medical aid to everybody, especially the children, newborn babies, and women. Besides, it was informed that the State was contemplating formulation of special schemes for the provision of medical facilities in this area.

The submissions were made on a PIL filed in the year 2007 by Dr. Rajendra Sadanand Burma, who had raised several issues contributing to the death of tribal children in Melghat area of the State. Primarily, Dr. Burma had alleged that adequate medical facilities do not reach the tribal people, resulting in increased infant mortality rape.

Having held “prolonged discussion” on the issues raised by him, the Court had then, last month, directed the State to examine the viability of framing a scheme or a policy to “address the steps to be taken and procedure to be followed in providing timely aid to the needy in tribal areas”. 

The Court had also made several other suggestions, including a review of the allowances for doctors visiting these areas, as well as the involvement of the corporate sector for organising medical camps in the area. It had recommended,

“We find that the allowances, which are prescribed for the doctors to visit these areas, are also required to be reviewed which shall be attractive and acceptable to the professionals in the medical field as it is informed that doctors are willing to offer their services but due to lack of proper facilities and allowances probably they are not coming forward to accept even brief assignments. We are of the view that the State would even contemplate involving corporate sectors and corporate hospitals for having camps in these areas and for providing other necessary back­up help. It is informed that even help from the international organizations working in the field could be looked into.”

The matter will next be heard on 1 August.

Read the Order Here