Boy dies of dog bites, mother attempts suicide

Boy dies of dog bites, mother attempts suicide

A six-year-old boy, who was attacked by a pack of stray dogs in the city last week, died on Thursday afternoon while being shifted from Vijayanagara Institute of Medical Sciences (VIMS) to Bangalore for further treatment.

Following Gopi’s death, his mother Adilakshmi attempted suicide in front of the hospital mortuary on Friday. 

According to police, Gopi had been admitted to VIMS after he was attacked by a pack of 10 stray dogs on January 21, while playing with his friends near his house. He developed breathing problems as his respiratory system was severely damaged, following injuries on his neck, chest, stomach and other regions. The doctors advised that the boy be shifted to Bangalore for further treatment as his condition had deteriorated.

As Adilakshmi could not afford to take her son to Bangalore for want of money, the Bellary Mahanagara Palike officials were informed about her plight. When they failed to take action, Adilakshmi’s neighbours and relatives collected some money and made arrangements to send her and Gopi in an ambulance to Bangalore. Unfortunately, Gopi died on the way near Hiriyur on Thursday.

Gopi’s grandmother Shivamma told Deccan Herald that around five years ago, Adilakshmi’s husband Sanjeevappa had committed suicide. She had shifted to Bellary with Gopi and daughter Kavitha from Udarapukonda village in Anantpur district, Andhra Pradesh, and worked as a coolie. Upset over her son’s death, Adilakshmi tried to end her life by consuming poison, she said.

Speaking to mediapersons after visiting VIMS on Friday, Palike Commissioner Chikkanna blamed the negligence of the officials of the Palike’s health division for the boy’s death. A compensation of Rs one lakh had been offered to the family. A committee headed by the deputy commissioner will decide on providing the remaining compensation. “Neither the doctors at VIMS, nor the Palike officials informed me about the boy’s condition,” he said.

There are more than 8,000 stray dogs in the city and measures will be taken to curb their menace, he said.

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