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Joint effort by government wings to combat dengue

Around 3,000 dengue cases have been reported in Bengal since January this year, most of those in and around Kolkata

Sanjay Mandal, Subhankar Chowdhury | Published 30.07.23, 05:49 AM
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Representational image

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Fighting dengue effectively will only be possible if all government departments coordinate and work together, a vector control expert in Delhi said on Saturday.

Bengal government officials said this year they have started a process to set up close coordination among several departments.


“Dengue is not a battle that can be fought by health or a couple of other government departments. Every department has to come together and share resources. The health department should be the nodal agency because of the know-how,” said the expert.

“The transport department, for example, has several depots where it has abandoned buses and vehicles where the Aedes mosquito can breed. Similarly, the education department has to ensure the premises of the schools, colleges and universities are kept clean,” the expert pointed out.

According to a state government official, around 3,000 dengue cases have been reported in Bengal since January this year, most of those in and around Kolkata. Several deaths have been reported in the past few weeks.

A senior official of the state health department said the departments have already started coordinating.

“We will be holding coordination meetings on dengue with all departments on a regular basis. The central agencies like the railways and Kolkata Port Trust have also been told to keep their premises clean,” said Narayan Swaroop Nigam, principal secretary of the health and family welfare department.

The Telegraph reported on Thursday that state chief secretary H.K. Dwivedi had asked all departments to work in close coordination at a meeting to discuss dengue.

“The irrigation department has been asked to keep the canals clean while the urban development department has to ensure the major drains are not clogged. The information and culture department has to raise awareness about dengue prevention,” said health secretary Nigam. In rural areas, the local panchayats have been asked to take up cleaning drives.

The education department has already started implementing the coordination efforts, said an official.

The heads of government and aided schools have been asked to ensure that the morning assembly should contain a speech on dengue awareness and prevention. They should also encourage the students to keep their own household environment clean.

The measures that the education department is lining up for dengue prevention from next week include awareness drives during the morning assembly. Students would be told to keep their household clean, said an official.

He said they would carry out the exercise in cooperation with the urban and municipal affairs and panchayat and rural development departments.

An official of the department said the schools would be advised to instruct their staff to ensure no water gets accumulated on the compounds as rainwater, trapped even in small pots, can turn into a breeding ground for dengue mosquitoes.

“At home, the students should be asked to use mosquito nets at night. They should consult a doctor if they have fever,” he said.

The idea is to sensitise a student in a way they carry the alertness to their households.

Last updated on 30.07.23, 05:49 AM

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