The Kolkata Municipal Corporation (KMC) authorities have adopted a unique way to combat diseases like dengue and malaria in the city.
For the first time, the civic body has hired two vehicles fitted with large LED screens (7.5 feet x 5.5 feet) which will showcase a 20-minute documentary on ways to prevent the spread of vectorborne diseases.
“We have hired two vehicles, one each for north and south Kolkata. The documentary in Bengali is an attempt to make people aware about diseases like dengue, malaria and chikungunya ,” chief municipal health officer (CMHO) Tapan Kumar Mukherjee told HT.
The vehicles would be stationed at different strategic points, including important road crossings, market places and slum areas for the whole of August. Atin Ghosh, member of mayor-in-council (health), and CMHO Mukherjee would closely study the mass impact of this initiative.
“The vehicles would be present on the road from 10 am to 8 pm. They aim to cover a total of 300 hours in one month. Depending on the impact, we would decide whether the service would be extended for another couple of months,” Mukherjee said.
Giving details about the documentary, the CMHO said apart from the voice over by Satinath Mukherjee, the 20-minute documentary would also have songs by Lopamudra Mitra, Raghav, Rupankar and Nachiketa.
It would also feature celebrities like Tapas Pal, Satabdi Roy, Debasree Roy and Soham.
This apart, in July, the civic body authorities have been making announcements through loudspeakers fitted atop autos on every Sunday at all the 144 wards, including the three new wards in Joka.
“The frequency will be increased to twice a week in August and September. The audio CD is a three-minute recorded message in Bengali and Hindi. Altogether, 22 rounds of announcements would be made to make the public aware about the dos and don’ts relating to vector-borne diseases till the Pujas,” the CMHO said.
KMC would be spending around R5 lakh a month for the LED vehicles to showcase the documentary and R25 lakh for announcements that will continue for three months.
“We hope to get a good response from the citizens and wish to strengthen the fight against dengue and malaria with active public participation,” Ghosh told HT.