A target-driven mindset and a disregard for female life mean the country’s birth control drive has been tainted by tragedy
It is one of the worst medical disasters in India’s history. Following a simple procedure called laparoscopic tubectomy carried out at two sterilisation camps in the Bilaspur district of Chhattisgarh state, 14 mothers – some with babies as young as six months – are dead. More than 70 others had to be hospitalised, and some are still critically ill.
The state government has ordered a judicial inquiry and a medical team from Delhi is trying to determine what went wrong. The doctor in Pendari who, with a lone assistant, performed tubectomies on 83 women in only five hours, has been arrested. At the second camp, 56 women were operated on by another doctor.