A 5-year-old boy in India died after he was bitten by a snake while he was sleeping inside his home.

The child, who lived in the state of Rajasthan, was rushed to a hospital, but succumbed to injuries due to delay in treatment, his family alleged. According to The Times of India, the victim, identified as Rishi Singh, was first taken to a government-run hospital; however, no doctors were available there.

The family alleged they repeatedly tried calling the doctor, who refused to go and treat the child. The victim only received a general check-up at the Chauhatan hospital, following which the family was told to take the boy to a private hospital. The child, who was writhing in pain, died after no doctors attended to him at the private hospital, the family claimed. 

After the child died, his family refused to take his body from the hospital. Several people protested outside the hospital, demanding justice for the victim.

The species of the snake that bit the 5-year-old was not known. 

India accounts for the highest number of snakebite deaths in the world. Global estimates of snakebite deaths have ranged from 50,000 to 125,000 in India alone, according to Nature.com. A paper published in 2020, titled "Trends in snakebite deaths in India from 2000 to 2019 in a nationally representative mortality study," estimated the annual deaths from snakebites to be an average of 58,000 (1.2 million snakebite deaths between 2000 and 2019). However, the under-counting of snakebite cases in India may impact the numbers.

Last month, a 10-year-old boy, who was sleeping inside his home, died after being bitten by a snake in the state of Madhya Pradesh. The boy reportedly screamed after being bitten, which alerted his family members. The child was initially taken to a hospital, where the family knew a doctor. However, he was then shifted to Berasia government hospital where he died during treatment. Investigating officer Dilip Jaiswal said the snake bit the boy on the left side of his back. The snake, which reportedly slithered away after biting the boy, was not identified. 

snake-2971930_640 Representational image Photo: pixabay