Kerala: 4 deaths reported at old age home

Four people have died in two days at a government-run old age home in Malappuram district, triggering a protest against the home authorities on Monday.

Four people have died in two days at a government-run old age home in Malappuram district, triggering a protest against the home authorities on Monday. Four inmates of the home in Thavanur — identified as Sreedevi (84), Kaliyamma (78), Velayudhan (102) and Krishnabose (74) — were reported dead on Sunday and Monday. Sreedevi died on Sunday and the others on Monday.

The home is run by the State Department for Social Justice. Even as the home administrators maintained that the inmates were aged and ailing, a group of local residents staged a protest and demanded an investigation into the “mysterious” deaths.

The State Human Rights Commission (SHRC) registered suo motu a case and ordered a probe. SHRC member K Mohankumar sought a report on the incident, within three weeks, from the District Collector and the District Police Chief. Explanation has also been sought from the home superintendent. “Doubts have been raised on whether or not regular health check-ups are done for the inmates and regarding functioning of the caretakers,” SHRC said in an interim order. The commission is scheduled to consider the case on October 30.

Minister for Health and Social Justice K K Shailaja directed Social Justice Department special secretary to conduct an investigation on the deaths.

“Baseless allegation”

The superintendent of the home, Abdul Kareem, dismissed the allegation of poor maintenance as baseless. The inmates are, typically, people who are either lost or abandoned on the streets, and all the four who died had health issues, he said. “Kaliyamma had been bedridden for a long time. After the news broke, her son has come to us. She had gone missing from her home. Sreedevi’s family has received her body, they didn’t have any complaints either,” Kareem told DH.

The home superintendent said a doctor visited the old age home frequently and monthly check-ups were being done for the inmates. The home has 79 inmates.

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Kerala: 4 deaths reported at old age home

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