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West Bengal sets 15-day target to curb dengue

According to data from Swasthya Bhavan, the state reported 5,396 cases in the 44th (current) week, which was 5,936 last week

Snehamoy Chakraborty | Published 04.11.22, 06:34 AM
West Bengal government set a fortnight’s target to curb the rising trend of dengue cases

West Bengal government set a fortnight’s target to curb the rising trend of dengue cases

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The West Bengal government on Thursday set a fortnight’s target to curb the rising trend of dengue cases across the state and asked its officials in Kolkata and the districts to ensure proper coordination among multiple departments to control the breeding of mosquitoes.

“Although the number of dengue cases has reduced this week by 540, the cumulative figure in West Bengal continues to be the highest since 2017. The state government is concerned about it and has asked its officials to take all possible measures to minimise the number within a fortnight,” said a senior health official in Kolkata.

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According to data from Swasthya Bhavan, West Bengal reported 5,396 cases in the 44th (current) week, which was 5,936 last week.

Like in the 43rd week, the cumulative count of dengue cases till the 44th week this year — 48,087 — is the highest since 2017. The cumulative figure was 42,666 in the 43rd week, the highest in the past five years.

The weekly review meeting on dengue was conducted on Thursday evening. It was headed by the director of health services, Siddhartha Niyogi. Representatives of rural and urban development departments, including officials of Kolkata Municipal Corporation, were present.

Sources said the state government had set the target to reverse the trend of rising dengue cases as the issue had been taken up by Opposition parties to attack the state government.

On Thursday afternoon, the BJP youth wing hit the streets in Kolkata accusing the government of negligence in controlling dengue, especially in Kolkata, where the case count is the highest among all urban centres in West Bengal.

Kolkata Municipal Corporation (KMC) reported 681 dengue cases this week, topping among 12 urban bodies. The number of cases in Kolkata last week was 745.

BJP workers and leaders, headed by Asansol South MLA  Agnimitra Paul, took out a protest rally from the party’s state headquarters to the KMC and demanded a meeting with mayor and urban development minister Firhad Hakim.

BJP workers sat on Chittaranjan Avenue and demonstrated as police stopped them from heading towards the KMC headquarters. That led to a scuffle between the police and activists, triggering a traffic snarl in the heart of the city for about an hour. The police cleared the road by detaining BJP workers.

“West Bengal saw a steep rise in dengue cases in the past few months because of the negligence of the state government. Thousands of people were infected and at least 50 persons died in Kolkata. The state government is hiding the real data,” Paul said.

“There is no doubt the dengue situation is alarming in at least six districts and in Kolkata. Nabanna does not want to give an opportunity to the BJP to accuse the government of neglect in public health. As mosquitoes spread dengue, vector-control measures are the only way to bring down the count,” said a senior state government official.

At Thursday’s meeting, KMC representatives were asked to intensify vector-control measures.

“Urban and rural local bodies are responsible for vector-control measures. In the case of Kolkata, it is the KMC’s responsibility. We believe there is a lack of initiative to destroy mosquito-breeding sites,” said a health official in Kolkata.

Though Nabanna wants greater measures to control dengue, a public health official said the number would decrease only if there was no rain in the next 15 days.

Last updated on 04.11.22, 09:54 AM
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