At least 82 female prisoners from Byculla prison have been admitted in JJ Group of Hospitals after they complained of vomiting and diarrhoea early Friday morning. Two prisoners are in a critical condition. According to Inspector General of Prison Rajvardhan Sinha, the prisoners allegedly reacted to a strong medicine dose given by civic health department on Thursday as a precautionary measure to prevent cholera. “Soon after taking the medicine, the inmates started vomiting. We sent them to the hospital as a precaution. Most are stable,” he told The Indian Express.
The Byculla Jail has 390 male and 210 female inmates. Three days ago, a 26-year-old male prisoner was diagnosed with cholera in JJ Hospital. Following the case, the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation gave a dose of prophylactic tablets to 600 prisoners in the jail and over 100 staffers to prevent further spread of cholera. BMC maintains the medicines are routinely given during Monsoons and are not responsible for diarrhoea. It is suspected that more than one patient has been infected with cholera.
Civic officials claim that following the medication only female prisoners suffered from diarrhoea, while male patients didn’t complain of any ailment, hinting that the possible spread of cholera was limited to the female section of the prison.
IG Sinha added that cleaning up of prison is underway and focus is to stabilise patients.
According to Dr Sanjay Surase, medical superintendent at JJ Hospital, patients are suffering from vomiting, lose motion, abdominal pain and dehydration. “Treatment is on. All are under observation,” he said. Few patients remain critical.