Three patients had died within 24 hours of undergoing surgery at the BHU hospital here and the condition of six others had deteriorated.
The Banaras Hindu University (BHU) authorities decided to close down the operation theatres in the Sir Sunder Lal (SSL) Hospital for three days.
An emergency meeting was convened by the medical superintendent of the hospital. A seven-member probe committee was formed at the meeting as per instructions from BHU Vice-Chancellor (VC) GC Tripathi to ascertain the cause of the deaths. It will submit its report within 48 hours.
The committee will be headed by SK Gupta with P Ranjan, MA Ansari, PN Tiwari, SK Singh, MK Gupta and Vikas Agarwal as members.
Arti Devi, Radheshyam Tripathi and Meeraj Ahmad died within three days of undergoing surgery at the hospital, said OP Upadhyaya, Medical Superintendent, SSL Hospital.
Four other patients -- Madhu, Prachi Tiwari, Usha Devi and Maya Devi -- were shifted to the ICU after a "sharp deterioration" was noticed in their health condition, he said, adding that all the four were stable now.
A few other patients, including Suman Devi and Shiv Prasad, too were kept under observation in the ICU as a precautionary measure, said Upadhyaya.
The doctors have been instructed to perform a surgery only in urgent cases for the next three days, sources said.
They added that it was suspected that an injection used in anaesthesia, which was bought from outside the hospital, had caused serious harm to the patients, while some alleged that there were issues with the operation theatres.