New Delhi: CPI on Wednesday demanded the resignation of Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Raman Singh and the state's health minister saying they should take responsibility for the botched operations at a sterilisation camp at Bilaspur which have left 11 women dead.
Questioning the "rationale" behind Chhattisgarh government fixing sterilisation targets, the party said, "How did the health ministry go ahead with such a programme when there was no infrastructure and qualified and trained doctors and nurses available?
Sterilisation procedures conducted at a state-run camp in Bilaspur district claimed the lives of 11 women and left nearly 69 others ill, some of them in a critical condition.
Expressing shock over the incident, CPI said in a statement, "The ruling BJP in Chhattisgarh is keen to achieve the sterilisation target. One fails to understand the rationale behind fixing targets for sterilisations?
"Pending inquiry, the Chief Minister and the Health Minister (Amar Agrawal) of the state should take moral responsibility and step down."
The party also demanded adequate compensation for the families of the victims who have lost their lives in the tragedy and said that all necessary help should be provided to ensure proper treatment of those affected.
"CPI urges the government to review the whole programme in the wake of the Bilaspur tragedy," it said.
CPI(M) had yesterday condoled the deaths of the women while terming the matter "unfortunate".
It had said that despite evidence of coercive target-based population control policies having a negative impact on the rights of poor women, several governments like continue with such policies.
"It is essential for the Centre to reiterate the policy decision taken by UPA-I rejecting target-based, coercive population control policies," the party's Politburo had said in a statement yesterday.
Women who underwent surgery at a sterilisation camp organised by the government at a private hospital in Pendari village on the outskirts of Bilaspur town on Saturday, developed post-operative complications with 11 of them, all below 32 years of age, dying as a result.