Bhubaneswar , Oct. 19 : After taking stock at the SUM hospital here where 20 people were killed in a massive fire, Union Health Minister JP Nadda on Wednesday said that there were safety issues that needed to be addressed, adding that stringent action will be taken against the people responsible for the tragedy.
Speaking to the media after interacting with the patients, Nadda said that he had been instructed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi the very moment the fire was reported, to ensure the safety of the patients at the hospital.
"It is very saddening and shocking. It's also painful and worrisome that such an incident has taken place. I've been told that an inquiry is going on, but prima facie I find that some safety issues are there which need to be addressed," Nadda said.
The Union Minister also called on the state government to take adequate steps and action so that the faith of the people is reposed, while adding that the people responsible should be punished.
On the basis of the preliminary fact-finding report, Odisha government yesterday filed two criminal cases alleging negligence in conduct and safety against the hospital and initiated administrative inquiries into the mishap.
The Bhubaneswar Commissionerate police have arrested four hospital staff on charges of negligence in conduct and safety.
The Odisha Human Rights Commission has also registered a suo motu case over the fire accident and served notices to the state Health Secretary and Director General (Fire Services) to submit a report within three weeks.
Some patients who were shifted from SUM Hospital to other hospitals in Bhubaneswar after the fire mishap, are said to be in critical condition and fighting for their life at the ICUs.