40 dengue deaths in Tamil Nadu so far, state struggles to contain spread
Caught by the neck due to dengue outbreak in the state, Tamil Nadu government on Friday sent a report to the center. At least 40 people have died of Dengue in Tamil Nadu and an equal number of people due to viral hemorrhagic fever, officials of the health department have confirmed. The numbers are alarming and politicians and officials have been forced to be on their toes to contain the spread of disease.
Tamil Nadu has reported 11,552 cases of dengue till October 8 while on paper the number of deaths stands at 18, officials of the health department have stated that there have been 40 deaths since January. Kerala, despite reporting the highest number of Dengue cases with 18,727 and Karnataka the second highest with 13,016, both states have managed to control deaths caused by the disease.
Centre's assistance sought
The Tamil Nadu government on Friday set up a 5-member team to review Dengue cases in the state. A report with ground realities has been submitted to the center. Tamil Nadu health minister Vijayabhaskar has sought Rs 219 crores as assistance from Central team to tackle the crisis.
Politicians pulled up
The AIADMK government that is caught up in a political crisis has come under severe criticism for its handling of the situation in Tamil Nadu. Even as cases of dengue and other viral fevers are piling up with hospitals running out of beds, Tamil Nadu politicians including Chief Minister Edappadi Palanisamy have been visiting places like Zoo instead of hospitals. Health minister Vijayabhaskar was seen recently inaugurating a cricket tournament while deaths due to Dengue continued in the state.
Puducherry takes precautions
Considering how fast the disease has been spreading in neighboring Tamil Nadu, Puducherry has gone on a drive to create awareness. Puducherry LT Governor Kiran Bedi is going on surprise visits to check health and sanitation measures that have been put in place. Citizens are being encouraged to get rid of stagnant water or any breeding grounds for the deadly mosquitoes.
Awareness programs cleanliness drives
In Chennai and other districts of Tamil Nadu citizen groups, student groups, NGOs, and other organizations are coming together hold cleanliness drives and awareness programs. Chennai Corporation Commissioner, D Karthikeyan, led a drive on Thursday that led to cleaning up of over 175 tonnes of scrap from old vehicles in one locality alone. The civic body has formed 200 teams, made up of 2,825 malaria labourers and 14,902 conservancy workers to carry out the mass cleaning drive.