Take urgent steps to check encephalitis: Azad to Maya
Health minister Ghulam Nabi Azad has written to UP chief minister Mayawati asking her government to take urgent steps to check the spread of acute encephalitis syndrome (AES) which has claimed over 200 deaths in Poorvanchal.delhi Updated: Oct 29, 2011 20:44 IST
Health minister Ghulam Nabi Azad has written to UP chief minister Mayawati asking her government to take urgent steps to check the spread of acute encephalitis syndrome (AES) which has claimed over 200 deaths in Poorvanchal.
Sources in the health ministry said that Azad had written the letter after he visited Gorakhpur and Siddharth Nagar, two affected districts of Uttar Pradesh.
"The letter gives credit to the state government for success in controlling Japanese encephalitis but adds that lack of sanitation and proper drinking water were hampering the battle against AES," a ministry official said.
In his letter Azad has said that the findings of scientists from National Institute of Virology, Pune suggested that AES, a water borne disease continued to prevail in the region as proper sanitation and drinking water were not available to residents.
Azad asked Mayawati to take meetings of all concerned departments of her state to stop the outbreak of AES.
Speaking to reporters, Azad confirmed that he had written the letter to Mayawati stressing that to fight AES, handpumps for drinking water needed to be replaced by pumps that get water from more than 70 feet below the ground surface where the AES virus cannot reach.
"We had told the state government earlier also and they had done some work but more needs to be done," Azad told reporters.