30 madrassa students in Bhiwandi land in hospital after lunch event

Updated: Jan 18, 2018, 19:52 IST | Rupsa Chakraborty

Nearly 30 students of Madrassa Darul Uloom Diwan Shah in Bhiwandi had to be rushed to Mumbai for medical help after they were diagnosed with severe food poisoning yesterday

Madrassa authorities at Nair Hospital where the students are currently undergoing treatment
Madrassa authorities at Nair Hospital where the students are currently undergoing treatment

Nearly 30 students of Madrassa Darul Uloom Diwan Shah in Bhiwandi had to be rushed to Mumbai for medical help after they were diagnosed with severe food poisoning yesterday. All the students, aged between 10 and 14 years, are recuperating at Nair Hospital.

According to sources, most of these students are orphans, who had been rescued from across the country and provided shelter at the madrassa. Sources said, on Tuesday the madrassa had organised a cultural programme on its premises, which was followed by a public lunch event. While over 1,000 people participated in the event, organiser Muktar Aatau Allah Shaikh had invited 60 students from the madrassa near Diwan Shah Baba Dargah to mark the occasion. According to school sources, few of the children started vomiting right after the event. After some others complained of diarrhoea, they were taken to a local private hospital. The source said, "Initial diagnosis pointed at nascent-level fungal infections caused by improperly canned foods. Five students were in critical condition."

A senior employee at the madrassa informed that some of the students were also suffering convulsions.

Madrassa officials admitted the five worst affected children to Indira Gandhi Memorial Hospital last evening and some children were admitted to Thane civil hospital, initially. But, all of them were shifted to Nair hospital around 11 pm yesterday.

A doctor overseeing the case said, "There is a possibility of botulism poisoning, which is a rare and possibly fatal illness caused by consumption of improperly canned or preserved foods. The symptoms include vomiting, diarrhoea, headache and fever. But we can’t be certain until we check all their medical reports."

Soon after learning about the incident, ex-deputy mayor Ahmed Siddiki, corporator Matloob Sardar and Bhiwandi Congress chief Shoeb Guddu rushed to Nair Hospital to meet the food poisoning victims. Guddu said, "The doctors have informed us that all the children are in a stable condition now. We have launched a probe to find out from where the food was sourced."

With inputs by Faisal Tandel

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