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Cholera attack

Ahmedabad, Oct. 3: At least six persons, including two children, have reportedly died of cholera in Padra taluka, 35 km from Vadodara, reports our correspondent. The disease has affected more than 200 people in six villages over the last four days.

Although the authorities have confirmed the six deaths, they denied that all the deaths were cholera related.

Health secretary S.K. Nanda claimed that only one person died of cholera. About one death, he was not sure, but about the other four, he said he was certain they were not cholera patients.

The health secretary said one person committed suicide, one died of low haemoglobin content, one from dehydration (not necessarily caused by cholera) and the fourth because his relatives forced doctors to discharge him. Nanda said the patient was improving in hospital but developed complications after being taken home.

Nanda, who is supervising the 23 medical teams that are working in the cholera-affected villages, admitted that of the 232 cases admitted in hospital, 14 have tested positive. But he said the situation was under control.

A 15-bed temporary hospital has been set up in the taluka headquarters to treat the patients. Since this morning, Nanda said, the number of admissions has gone down.

The disease broke out after the villagers consumed contaminated piped water.

A 10-point action plan has been announced by the health secretary to control the spread of the disease. Doctors from the microbiology department of Baroda Medical College are conducting tests at the temporary hospitals at the taluka headquarters.

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