Rahul Gandhi, Siddharamaiah, D.K. Shivakumar had promised Government jobs to dependents of 36 deceased
Chamarajanagar: With Congress storming back to power in the State, several families in Chamarajanagar district are eagerly waiting to get a Government job as promised by the grand old party.
On the unfortunate day of May 2, 2021, a tragic incident unfolded at the District Hospital, resulting in the loss of 36 patients’ lives due to a lack of oxygen supply. As the night progressed, the oxygen levels gradually declined, and by 10.30 pm, the supply ceased entirely, leading to the devastating outcome.
Following this headline-making tragedy, the Congress party, which was then in the Opposition while the BJP formed the Government, pledged to provide Government jobs to the next of kin of the deceased if the party regained power in the State.
The then President of All India Congress Committee (AICC) Rahul Gandhi and KPCC President D.K. Shivakumar had repeatedly promised on these lines, kindling hope among the dependents of oxygen tragedy victims.
Soon after the tragedy, the then Opposition Leader in the Legislative Assembly and now Chief Minister Siddharamaiah and KPCC President and current Deputy Chief Minister D.K. Shivakumar had come rushing to the district only to console the grieving family members of the deceased. Shivakumar had even given a compensation of Rs. 1 lakh for each of the bereaved families.
A few months later, during the General Elections for the Legislative Assembly, Rahul Gandhi embarked on the Bharat Jodo Yatra, covering Tamil Nadu, Kerala and Karnataka. On October 1,
2022, he entered the State through Gundlupet, where he attentively listened to the grievances of the affected individuals from the oxygen tragedy at Veeranapura Cross in Gundlupet taluk.
Rahul Gandhi assured them by stating that “the Congress party stands by you and will do everything possible to assist you. If the Congress comes to power in the State, efforts will be made to provide Government jobs to a family member of each deceased person involved in the tragedy.”
That apart, in the run up to recent election, Shivakumar, who addressed a mammoth public meet as part of ‘Prajadhwani Yatre’ in Chamarajanagar on Jan. 26, had said that “36 people lost their lives to oxygen tragedy in the district, but BJP Government in the State, neither seriously probed into the issue nor distributed compensation in an adequate manner. If our party returns to power, job will be given to one each of the dependents from the families of victims at the same District Hospital itself and also take action against the officers responsible for the tragedy.”
One has to wait and watch whether Congress party that has wrested power from BJP, with absolute majority by winning 135 seats, will walk the talk.
Hopeful of securing a job
Jyothi of Bisalavadi village in Chamarajanagar taluk lost her husband Siddanayaka in the oxygen tragedy. “With two children to take care of, I was left to fend for myself, when Congress gave a compensation of Rs. 1 lakh. But the State BJP Government did nothing,” rued Jyothi who desperately needs the Government job at least to educate her kids further and manage the family.
“The children got free education from Suttur Mutt. My son has excelled in recent SSLC exams, but is unable to pursue studies further due to financial constraints. As Congress party is back in the saddle, it would be really helpful, it the party keeps up the promise,” said Jyothi.