Between 11am and 2am, medical practitioners and family members frantically passed out manual resuscitator bags to parents as families desperately scrambled to save their children's lives. According to police reports, 21 of the deaths were caused by oxygen shortage, cited by Chicago Tribune.
"We saw children dying around us," a victim's father said.
"Obviously, it's the hospital's fault," he added. "So many children have died because of them. My son was fine until nighttime, then something wrong happened."
Indian Nobel Peace Prize winner and child advocate Kailash Satyarthi tweeted, "30 kids died in a hospital without oxygen. This is not a tragedy. It's a massacre."
Referencing India's 70th anniversary of its independence from England, Satyarthi castigated the government: "Is this what 70 years of freedom means for our children?"
— Kailash Satyarthi (@k_satyarthi) August 11, 2017
The state's health minister and hospital officials claimed that the deaths were not caused by the unpaid bill. The state's chief minister, Yogi Adityanath, however, has established a committee to investigate the electricity bill.
"The guilty will not be spared," Adityanath asserted.
According to documents revealed by The Washington Post, the hospital owed a whopping $89,750 to Pushpa Sales Private Limited, a medical supply company based in Lucknow.
The company had sent multiple letters to the hospital and district magistrate over a period of six months requesting payment. After the contract between the supply company and the hospital ended on July 31, Pushpa waited four more days before cutting off the oxygen supply on August 4.
Extreme negligence on the part of the hospital's chief medical officer is alleged, after he apparently ignored warnings from employees monitoring oxygen storage levels that the supply would only last until Thursday.
Intense anger flooded social media outlets following the aftermath of what is now seen to be a completely avoidable tragedy.
A political cartoon depicting babies as angels in the sky and an Indian government official trying to reach them quickly surfaced on the internet.