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Villages complain of malaria deaths

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By SANTOSH K. KIRO in Ranchi
  • Published 2.07.09

Ranchi, July 2: The monsoon has brought with it several cases of malaria.

Twelve persons have died of malignant malaria in Lohardaga alone, while another four deaths have been reported in the Pakur district.

State officials accept that malaria cases have suddenly shot up post monsoon. However, they have confirmed the death of only one person due to the disease. The rest, they argued, might have occurred due to other reasons. “Only one person has died due to malaria,” said Dr J.E. Tigga, civil surgeon of Lohardaga.

He, however, accepted that several persons have complained of fever. In villages of Kisko block, over 200 persons are suspected to be suffering from malaria. Several others have been reported sick. “We have collected 192 blood samples so far. Five among these tested positive for malaria,” Tigga said.

Dr P. Baskey of the state malaria office has ordered the civil surgeon of Lohardaga to camp in the region with a team of doctors. The malaria officer himself visited Kisko block to take stock of the situation. “We have distributed rapid diagnostic kits among health personnel across the state, including Lohardaga,” said Baskey.

Mid-June or early July is the breeding season of mosquitoes. In Pakur, over 10 villages in Littipara area have reported cases of malaria.

Villagers told The Telegraph in Dhurio, Katalpara, Japri, Kerogali and Paldama, the situation is worse. “Four people have died of brain malaria in the region,” said Shivcharan Malto, a villager of Litipara.

Though the state malaria officer maintained that the cause of the deaths in Littipara is yet to be ascertained, he said health officials of the district have been told to hold camps here.

The health department also plans to take help of sahiya (village lady health attendant) to diagnose malaria cases.