Mother gives birth 'twice' in three days

Audit team catches fraud at primary health centre

Exposing serious irregularities in the implementation of a welfare scheme for mothers, a woman was shown to have ‘delivered twice’ in three days in Uttar Pradesh’s Balrampur district, about 300 kilometres from here.

The irregularity was detected during an audit conducted recently at a primary health centre at Shriduttganj, according to health officials here.

It was found that Shabreen, a resident of Bhendurih village, had delivered a baby at the centre in September last year and was paid a sum of Rs 1,400 under the Janani Suraksha Yojna (Mother Protection Scheme).

Barely three days after the delivery, Shabreen was shown to have delivered again at the same health centre and was paid the same amount once again, officials said.

“Apparently, the first delivery was real but not the second time. The money may have been siphoned by the concerned babus,” an official remarked.

District health officials have been directed to fix accountability and punish the guilty officials, sources said.

The audit team has apprehensions that similar irregularities could have taken place at other health centres as well. 

“There is a need to conduct a thorough inquiry into the implementation of the scheme in the district,” said a health official here.

Serious irregularities were detected in the implementation of the scheme at Shivpura block in the district a couple of years back.

The probe, however, was still going on, sources said. Irregularities worth hundreds of crores had been detected in the implementation of the National Rural Health Mission in the state in the past.

The CBI was currently probing the NRHM scam on the direction of the Allahabad High Court. Several health officials, including the doctors, have been arrested in connenction with the scam.

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