Gorakhpur, Oct 27 (UNI) The killer vector-borne menace, Japanese Encephalitis (JE), continued to claim lives of children in eastern Uttar Pradesh with the toll mounting to a staggering of 358, following three more deaths today.
Official sources said since January 2078 JE patients had been admitted to the famous Baba Raghav Das Medical College here and district hospitals, of which 358, including 46 Biharis and three Nepalis, succumbed.
Almost 197 patients -- including 34 fresh cases -- are in remission. Some patients are also recuperating at the district hospitals of Gorakhpur and Basti divisions.
The JE patients trickle from Gorakhpur, Deoria, Maharajganj, Sant Kabirnagar, Kushinagar, Ballia, Gonda, Bahraich, Mau, Basti, Siddharthnagar, Azamgarh, Gonda and Balrampur districts of UP.
Gorakhpur has the dubious distinction of being the JE epicentre in the region. The endemic afflicts eastern UP during monsoon every year. Last year, the killer disease had taken almost 1,000 people under its jaws.
The government undertakes a massive vaccination drive against the vector-borne disease every year, however, the efficacy and penetration of the drive comes under cloud with the mounting toll.