The extended warm weather even in December is the main cause behind the increasing dengue cases. The health officials say so far this year, over 950 such cases have been reported in the city, and around three are reported every day.
If precautions are not taken, there are chances of deaths too, they opine, adding that even in the month of December, the breeding of Aedes aegypti mosquito, that can spread dengue fever, is still occurring, which is quite rare.
“The entire region, including the states of Punjab, Haryana, Himachal Pardesh, Delhi, has witnessed spurt in the dengue cases this year, though the reason is not known as the subtype two of the dengue virus was found last year as well. So, we can’t claim that the mutation of the dengue virus is the prime reason,” Dr Anil Garg, nodal officer, the National Vector Borne Disease Control Programme (NVBDCP). This year, one confirmed death and three probable dengue deaths were reported in the city. “Several deaths and more dengue cases have been prevented by the UT health department’s strict actions, though the possibility of death due to dengue is still there, hence we should remain alert,” added Garg.
Making the dengue disease notifiable under the Epidemic Disease Act, the health department so far has issued over 80 challans and over 1,500 notices against those who violated the NVBDCP guidelines.
Dr Rakesh Sehgal, medical parasitology, the Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research, said, “There will be no respite from dengue until the temperature goes down, as it’s the sole reason that the cases are being reported.”
November was warmest month in comparison to the last 10 years. “High humidity and temperature are the major reasons. During November and December, both maximum and minimum temperatures were reported above normal by 3-4 degrees,” said Surender Paul, director, UT meteorological department.