Health officials have warned that the national Capital may face a serious public health crisis due to vector-borne diseases in the future if the civic and the government agencies didn’t work together.
Experts warned that the death toll in the Capital may double in the next five years if the current lack of coordination between various agencies continued.
To fix responsibilities, the municipal commissioners every year call a meeting with departments concerned. Representatives of the irrigation and flood control department, Delhi Jal Board (DJB), Public Works Department (PWD), RWAs and Delhi Police participate.
“But none of the departments do their jobs well. That is why huge number of dengue and chikungunya cases are being reported from areas such as Shaheen Bagh this year,” said a malaria inspector from the South Delhi Municipal Corporation (SDMC). The SDMC has now formed a special team of conduct checks in Shaheen Bagh.
The health officials had requested religious leaders and RWAs in Shaheen Bagh to spread awareness about vector-borne diseases. “But none of our requests were heeded,” said a official.
So far, the three corporations have found cases of mosquito breeding in 1.21 lakh homes.
The south civic body blames rapid illegal constructions, perpetual water logging in basements and unhygienic conditions in the city as reasons responsible for the breeding of dengue larva.
“At construction sites, water logging is a common. We issue challans. Ideally, the building department and Delhi Development Authority should check these sites and ensure no breeding is happening,” said an SDMC official.
Dr Neena Valecha, director, National Institute of Malaria Research, (India Council for Medical Research), stated that the aedes mosquitoes breeds in domestic or peri-domestic areas. “So primarily it is the responsibility of residents to take precautionary measures. Moreover, there is no specific treatment or vaccine available for disease so prevention is the only option,” she said.
An Aedes mosquito egg takes a week to become an adult. In 24 hours, an egg turns in to larva and in another five days it becomes the pupa. After attaining the pupa stage, the adult mosquitoes are born within five minutes.