Citing the media reports, which said that the deaths were due to malnutrition and negligence, Justice D Murugesan, NHRC member observed that the contents of the media reports, if true, "raised a serious issue of violation of human rights," a NHRC statement said.

Notices have been issued to Principal Secretary, Medical and Health Department of the government of Tamil Nadu and District Magistrates of Salem and Dharmapuri calling for a report within four weeks.

The Dharmapuri government medical college hospital has been under the scanner after the death of 13 infants since November 14.
Hospital authorities claimed that there had been no medical negligence and said the deaths were due to "extreme non-viability nature of factors, including pre-existing low birth weight and respiratory distress."     

The deaths have triggered a storm with BJP Tamil Nadu unit demanding a 'white paper' and resignation of the Health Minister while DMK chief M Karunanidhi has condemned the 'lackadaisical' attitude of the government and demanded action against those responsible.

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