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A 10-year-old girl, Shahla Sherin, studying in the fifth standard, died after she was bitten by a snake in her school in Sulthan Bathery area in Kerala’s Wayanad district. The incident with Shahla took place in at the Sarwajan vocational higher secondary school.
The girl’s death sparked outrage and protests across the state of Kerala following allegations of negligence against the school authorities. The doctors who treated the girl at four hospitals were also accused of negligence.
Following a preliminary inquiry, a teacher at the Government Sarvajana High School and a doctor at the Bathery taluk hospital were suspended after they were found guilty of delaying treatment to the girl.
In a Facebook post, Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan condoled the death of the child and said that the government has taken the incident very seriously and will ensure strict action against the accused.
വയനാട് ജില്ലയിലെ സുൽത്താൻ ബത്തേരി ഗവ. സ്കൂളിലെ അഞ്ചാം ക്ലാസ് വിദ്യാര്ഥിനിയായ ഷെഹല ഷെറിൻ ക്ലാസ് മുറിയില് പാമ്പ്…
At around 3 pm on Wednesday, November 20, Shahla injured herself after her leg was caught in a crack on the classroom floor. The girl’s classmates and parents have alleged that the teachers refused to take the girl to the hospital immediately after red spots appeared on her foot.
Although some students suspected a snakebite, the teacher insisted that the injury was only because of a nail or the sharp edges of the hole on the floor.
“If she was taken to a hospital on time the life of my friend could have been saved,” a student said. The students also complained that the school authorities did not allow them to use sandals or shoes inside classrooms. There were many cracks on the floor of the old school building and snakes were a common sight on the school premises,” The Hindu quoted a student of the school as saying.
School authorities, however, maintained that they gave first-aid to the girl immediately and informed her father at once. Her father said that he would come to the school and take her to the hospital.
At around 3.45 pm, the father, Abdul Azeez, reached the school and took his daughter to a private hospital and later to the taluk hospital at Sulthan Bathery. The child was under observation for around an hour at the taluk hospital, following which she was referred to the medical college hospital in Kozhikode. Her conditioned worsened on her way to Kozhikode and she was admitted to the government hospital at Vythiri.
She was later shifted to a private hospital at Vythiri, where she was declared dead by doctors on arrival.
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