In Mumbai 47 resident doctors at the civic-run Sion hospital fell ill, after consuming a tricoloured sweet served in the canteen on the occasion of Independence Day.
Around 20 resident doctors complained of stomach cramps, giddiness, bouts of vomiting and diarrhoea. They were admitted to ward no 2 as a few showed signs of severe dehydration. “Some had to be started on intravenous fluids,” said a doctor on duty. While taking the medical history, it was found that they had all consumed a tiranga barfi that was served during breakfast. “Students who had eaten the breakfast but not the barfi did not have any problems,” said a doctor admitted with stomach cramps.
A member of the Maharashtra Association of Resident Doctors said the mawa used to prepare the sweet was bought on Thursday evening. “It is possible the mawa became stale by the time it was used. It could also be fungal infection commonly seen in monsoon,” he said.
Dean Dr Avinash Supe said the Sion police and public health department are both probing the matter. “We admitted 47 resident doctors, including 24 women, for observation in our wards. None of them were serious as they were managed on time. Those investigating the incident have found out that the mawa used in the sweet was procured from Koliwada”. He said the colour used to make the sweet could have also caused the poisoning. The FDA may collect samples for testing from the police, who have lodged a complaint against the canteen caterers. “The contractor who provided the mawa regularly supplies food to the canteen,” said senior inspector Baburao Gavit.