Cultural extravaganza organised by the Uttar Pradesh government for the Mega Mahotsav in Gorakhpur - all at the expense of the taxpayer.
The Gorakhpur Mahotsav will cost the exchequer a whopping 1.33 crore rupees - money that critics point out could have been better used for facilities in the state-run BRD hospital in the same city.
Not so long ago, in August of 2017, around 79 infants died in BRD hospital after oxygen supply allegedly failed. A MIRROR NOW expose also showed how primary health centres in the same city lacked doctors and carried medicine past the expiry date.
MIRROR NOW IMPACT: Gorakhpur’s BRD hospital gets a clean-u
But the state would rather spend money on the Gorakhpur Mahotsav and its obsession with painting the town saffron.
The Uttar Pradesh government's priorities lie exposed so MIRROR NOW asks - is this the Ram Rajya that Yogi Adityanath promised?
"The question we have to ask is what is Gorakhpur celebrating, exactly? Have they managed to stop little babies from dying? Have they managed to find the solution to the health problems? What is Gorakhpur celebrating and how is it that a government that cannot find the money to improve its healthcare, seems to find the money for a massive celebration?" Executive Editor Faye D'Souza asked on the Urban Debate.
Watch the entire debate below:
A massive fire broke out at Gorakhpur’s BRD medical college hospital at 10 am on Monday causing severe damage to the principal’s office and adjacent records room in the premises.
“The fire destroyed huge number of documents and the file related to oxygen case was also kept in the principal's office which I fear is destroyed”, a hospital employee alleged before the media on condition of anonymity.
While describing the fire as mysterious, Samajwadi Party (SP) district president Prahlad Yadav claimed that the fire was an “act of sabotage to destroy vital documents related to the provision of oxygen to the hospital and files pertaining to short supply that led to deaths many children within a span of 24 to 48 hours”, reported Firstpost.
Again, recently the Yogi Adityanath government has ordered the withdrawal of a case against the chief minister and a dozen others for holding a meeting in alleged violation of prohibitory orders over 22 years ago.
In May this year, shortly after Adityanath took over the reins of the state, his government had told the Allahabad High Court that he cannot be prosecuted in another case for allegedly making a hate speech that was said to have triggered communal riots in Gorakhpur in 2007.
The government refused to grant the mandatory sanction for his prosecution.
"I just want to point out one thing that when there are crores and crores of rupees spent in Gorakhpur with a celebration right now with a Bollywood night and Bhojpuri night and celebrities who will be singing and dancing for entertainment, there were 1400 babies who died in one hospital in the last year alone, which is an average of 5.3 babies a day in one hospital. UP would be far more concerned if there were a similar number of cows that were dying in UP. You would get a far sharper reaction from the state and this government than we are getting for those children," said D'Souza during her closing statement.
One of the major reasons for the Japanese Encephalitis in Gorakhpur is because of the filth there but the government is spending its money and energy on painting things saffron. This is the definition of hogwash. This is what is being done to put up a facade to make people think and believe that things are improving when they aren't. The UP government needs to get its priorities in line - babies are always more important than what they are doing right now.