The municipal corporations are grappling with staff shortage as they have not filled vacancies in their health department for four years now.
As the number of dengue and chikungunya cases are rising steeply, the shortage affects the civic bodies’ preventive measures.
The three civic agencies have over 1,000 vacancies. South Delhi Municipal Corporation (SDMC) has 476 vacancies out of 2,764 sanctioned posts, 241 out of 1,421 in East Delhi Municipal Corporation (EDMC) and 407 out of 1,308 in North Delhi Municipal Corporation, said sources.
Manpower requirement shot up after the civic bodies’ trifurcation in 2012, said North MCD standing committee chairman Pravesh Wahi. “We have repeatedly asked the Delhi Subordinate Services Selection Board, whose responsibility it is to fill the vacancies in the department,” he said.
In North corporation, all six assistant malaria officer posts and 14 out of 15 senior malaria inspector posts are vacant.
In SDMC, 11 out of 12 senior malaria inspector posts and 114 out of 324 assistant malaria inspector posts are vacant.
The EDMC’s 77 out of 153 assistant malaria inspector posts are vacant.
SDMC leader of the House, Subhash Arya, said, “We have hired contractual workers and are trying our best to ensure that residents do not suffer.”
The civic bodies recorded 487 dengue cases in Delhi this year so far, with 368 cases and two deaths in August alone. In the last week, there were 176 cases. There were 432 chikungunya cases till August 27.
Lado Sarai resident Nitish Parashar said, “It is the same old story in Delhi every monsoon. There has been no fogging in our area this month. People suffer due to lackadaisical attitude of officials.”
Delhi Subordinate Services Selection Board officials could not be contacted, despite repeated attempts.