Boy consumes poisonous substance in playschool

Mother accuses authorities of negligence

Boy consumes poisonous substance in playschool

In a case of gross negligence at a playschool, a two-year-old boy accidentally consumed a poisonous substance. The incident took place at Natkhat Playschool in west Delhi’s Janakpuri and the boy is currently undergoing treatment.

His parents have alleged that the playschool authorities’ negligence was responsible for their child’s condition as he was denied timely and proper medical help.

The incident took place on Friday, exactly a month after the victim, Utkarsh Singh, was admitted to Natkhat Playschool on Pankha Road. Utkarsh’s mother Pushpa told Deccan Herald that she and her husband, Jeevan, had carried out proper background checks before admitting him to the playschool but the manner in which the events unfolded has left them worried.

“I went to pick my son from the playschool at 3:30 pm and requested the teachers to hand him over to me. They told me to wait as Utkarsh was sleeping. This had happened before and it never took more than a couple of minutes to wake the child up. On Friday, it took unusually long and when he was finally brought, he looked uncomfortable,” said Pushpa.

Pushpa added that Utkarsh was crying and his mouth reeked of kerosene oil. He was constantly coughing and also vomited when Pushpa got near him. The playschool staff initially feigned surprise and later said it could be because his sleep was interrupted.

Pushpa later took Utkarsh to Mata Chanan Devi Hospital, where the doctors initially refused to admit him. When she questioned them about the reason for the refusal, she came to know that Utkarsh was taken to the same hospital earlier in the day, but those accompanying him refused to get him admitted ignoring the doctors’ advice.

“On my request, the doctors admitted Utkarsh and we informed police. Utkarsh continues to be in the hospital and doctors are yet to ascertain the nature of the liquid that he consumed but suspect that it was a paint thinner,” Pushpa added.

On the basis of Pushpa’s statement, a case under section 284 (negligent conduct with respect to poisonous substance) and 337 (causing hurt by act endangering life or personal safety of others) of the Indian Penal Code has been registered against Natkhat Playschool with Janakpuri police station.

According to police, the teacher under whose custody the boy was placed, has been zeroed in for questioning. No arrest has been made so far. A senior police officer said they were probing the family’s claim that Utkarsh was taken back by the school staff from the hospital against the doctor’s advice.

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