At least five tribal children have died of pneumonia in Orissa's Mayurbhanj district over the past month and more than 10 are suffering from the illness , officials said Sunday.
The children, mostly below five years age, died at Kuanrabila, a tribal village located 150 km from the district head quarter of Baripada.
The ailing children have been brought to the local government hospital at Jashipur by a medical team who visited the village on Friday, district collector V.K. Pandian told IANS.
The village, which is surrounded by forests, is inhabited by around 65 families. The people refuse to take medicines out of superstitious belief. They rely on the help of witch doctors instead of coming to the hospital, he said.
Pneumonia is a severe infection of the respiratory tract, which causes fever, shortness of breath and the discharge of phlegm.