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Heatwave grips Bihar: Election duty officer dies due to heatstroke; death toll rises to 19

On Thursday, Kaimur district reported four deaths, including a worker on election duty. Additionally, three fatalities were reported in Bhojpur district's Arrah, as the region battles an increasing number of heatstroke cases.

Heatwave grips Bihar: Election duty officer dies due to heatstroke; death toll rises to 19 AJR
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First Published May 31, 2024, 11:17 AM IST

Bihar is currently reeling under severe heatwave conditions, which have claimed the lives of 19 people so far, with temperatures soaring past 44 degrees Celsius. In Aurangabad, the death toll has reached 12, with over 20 patients receiving treatment in various hospitals across the district.

On Thursday, Kaimur district reported four deaths, including a worker on election duty. Additionally, three fatalities were reported in Bhojpur district's Arrah, as the region battles an increasing number of heatstroke cases.

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Speaking to a news agency, Dr. Sahil Raj from Kaimur's Mohania sub-divisional hospital said, "Around 40 people affected by heatstroke visited the hospital. Among them, two, including polling personnel, succumbed to heatstroke. Currently, 30 to 40 people, including police personnel, are undergoing treatment."

Dr. Raj added that many patients have been discharged after receiving treatment, while others continue to be monitored. He also mentioned that a teacher named Shahnawaz Khan, who was on duty with him, suffered a heatstroke and was found dead after failing to wake up from sleep post-election duty.

Assistant sub-inspector of police, Satish Kumar Ravi, stationed at Mohania police station, confirmed that four bodies have been sent for postmortem to different locations.

Bhojpur District Magistrate Mahendra Kumar reported, "Three people have died, including a home guard who could not be saved despite being brought to the hospital. Another presiding officer in Jagdishpur, who was on duty, also passed away after being referred to a hospital. Additionally, Rajesh Ram collapsed and died."

Mahendra Kumar emphasized that a medical team is on high alert and ready to assist. "Police and mobile medical teams are vigilant across all hospitals and will visit police residential areas. Anyone facing heat-related issues will be taken to the dedicated heatwave ward at the municipal hospital," he said.

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Addressing the challenge of conducting elections amid the heatwave, Kumar said, "This is a challenge, but elections must proceed. The polling party handling the EVMs must adhere to heatwave guidelines and minimize sun exposure while facilitating the election process."

Bihar is set to vote in the final phase on June 1, having participated in all seven phases of the Lok Sabha elections. The results will be announced on June 4.

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