"Will Rahul Gandhi Answer For Bihar Child's Death": Minister Slams Bandh

Union minister blames Opposition's Bharat Bandh protests for baby's death in Jehanabad

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Ravi Shankar Prasad says Congress spreading atmosphere of fear

New Delhi: 

Union minister Ravi Shankar Prasad claimed that a two-year-old baby died in Bihar's Jehanabad, after an ambulance carrying her was caught in traffic jam, due to Bharat Bandh protests called by the Opposition against steep rise in fuel prices. The district administration of Jehanabad, however, has denied the reports of the baby's death due to traffic jam.

The magistrate of Jehanabad, Alok Ranjan Ghosh, told NDTV that no one stopped the vehicle in which Pramod Manjhi, the father of the baby was travelling. "There may have been some delay in getting the auto in the village but protesters were not stopping any ambulance on the way to the hospital, said Mr Ghosh.

The officer's claim was contradicted by the child's father. "We faced several obstructions on our way to the town. Our autorickshaw was stopped at many places which resulted in a delay and led to her condition to deteriorate. She died before we reached," Mr Manjhi, a resident Belaganj village, said.

The union minister who is from Bihar alleged that the Congress is creating an "atmosphere of fear" in the country. "Will Rahul Gandhi be responsible for the baby's death," said Mr Prasad, claiming that the Opposition's Bharat Bandh protests were not successful.

Problems due to rising fuel prices were "momentary and caused by global factors," said the minister. "We are standing with the people in their concern, but the solution of this problem is not in our hands," he said.

The Narendra Modi government has worked a lot to bring down inflation and has achieved success as well, Mr Prasad told reporters. While inflation was 10.4 per cent during UPA's tenure, now it is 4.7 per cent, he said.

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