Nearly 200 residents were found suffering from diarrhoea at mohalla Kaintha here on Wednesday while the authorities termed mixing of potable water with sewerage as the reason for spread of this epidemic.
The officials, who were earlier engaged in preparations for the upcoming five days visit of the chief minister Parkash Singh Badal to the constituency beginning tomorrow, swung into action immediately to ensure medicare be extended to the affected residents at their door steps.
As many as 53 patients suffering from acute diarrhoea were admitted at local civil hospital by Wednesday evening while the health authorities examined 150 such patients during the specially organised camp in affected locality and distributed medicines to them.
The residents alleged that the municipal council failed to act timely in checking contamination of drinking water in ward no 11 to 13 despite complaints were lodged in this regard.
"The health department's team has collected four samples of drinking water from the residences of as many affected families. The samples are being sent to the Chandigarh lab for examination. Besides, we found leakage of water supply pipes at two locations. This might have led to mixing of drinking water with the sewerage to ultimately spread the diarrhea in mohalla Kaintha," Sub divisional magistrate Rahul Chaba said, adding that water tankers have been deployed to ensure proper supply of potable water to the residents.
With civil hospital not equipped to cater to such a huge rush of indoor patients, Sri Guru Hargbind Sewa Society, a local NGO, arranged extra beds for the affected residents at the hospital. Civil surgeon AS Jarewal too visited the spot to monitor the arrangements. Meanwhile, the health authorities have stocked chlorine tablets at local gurdwara so that affected patients could get the medicines in the night too. "The residents are being informed that they need to add one chlorine tablet in 20 litres of water for 30 minutes before using the same for drinking or other related purposes," Chaba added.
Meanwhile, the council staffers came out of long slumber to check water pipes passing near the drains in the affected locality. The council had also decided to check unauthorised water connections, which usually resulted in contamination of the potable water.