In the last 16 days, over a 100 children have died of encephalitis in Muzaffarpur, and more than 300 others have contracted the disease. 

On Sunday, Union Health Minister Dr Harsh Vardhan held a press meet with Minister Of State for Health and Family Welfare Ashwini Kumar Choubey and Bihar Health Minister Mangal Pandey in Muzaffarpur to address the issue. 


In the midst of discussions about how to tackle this serious issue, Mangal Pandey asked reporters what the cricket score of the India and Pakistan match was at the moment. ANI posted a video of the incident. 

Pandey asks, 

How many wickets have fallen till now?

To which he receives an answer saying,

Four wickets.

Predictably, most people were aghast, and his behaviour was met with extreme criticism from all corners. According to NDTV, the RJD, Congress, Hindustan Awam Morcha (HAM) and the Left, have all demanded Mangal Pandey’s resignation for displaying ‘insensitivity’ during a state crisis.

RJD leader Ram Chandra Purve said,

Pandey was more interested in knowing the cricket score while Harsh Vardhan was telling mediapersons their plans to alleviate the situation arising from the encephalitis outbreak.

Encephalitis causes flu-like symptoms such as high fever, convulsions and headaches, and one of the main causes is low blood sugar. The Centre has now promised to build a state-of-the-art research centre within a year to deal with future encephalitis outbreaks.