A day after a case of suspected dengue death in the BBMP’s Pourakarmikas’ Quarters at Kadirenapalya came to light, fear has gripped the residents of the locality.
While residents claim that the victims, Deepika and Ravanayya, died of dengue, the BBMP officials say that Ravanayya died of alcohol overdose. While Deepika’s death certificate says that she died of dengue shock syndrome, BBMP officials say that it cannot be confirmed as the victim did not undergo the Mac-Elisa test.
Though the locality appears to have been cleaned, bleaching powder applied and garbage cleared on Thursday, a closer look will reveal that stagnant water, slush and stench continue to haunt the residents.
K. Narayana was seen rushing his 12-year-old daughter to the hospital. “The doctor has said that the platelet count has reduced and asked us to admit her to the hospital immediately,” he said.
V.P. Anandraj, another resident, said that at least twenty people from the locality were undergoing treatment at various hospitals. “It is difficult to live in such unhygienic conditions. Our situation reflects the neglect by the civic body. We are poor people. The BBMP should reimburse hospital bills of those who have fallen sick,” he said. The demands of the residents include compensation to the families of Deepika and Ravanayya. Besides, they want the BBMP conduct health camps at the locality once in 15 days.
Mayor B.S. Sathyanarayana and BBMP Commissioner M. Lakshminarayan, along with officials of the Health Department, visited the locality on Thursday and assured residents that a health check-up camp would be conducted on Friday. However, Mr. Lakshminarayan said that issues of compensation and reimbursement would be examined.
A total of 17 positive dengue cases have been reported in BBMP limits from January to June this year. As many as 215 dengue cases were reported for the corresponding period in 2013. Nirmala Buggi, Chief Health Officer (in-charge) at BBMP, said that the fewer number of dengue cases this year could be attributed to delayed monsoon and awareness drives.
The Health Department had planned to conduct door-to-door campaigns by accredited social health activists in May and June to spread awareness about diseases such as dengue and chikungunya. However, the drives do not seem to have percolated to areas from lower economic pockets. A visit by this correspondent to Okkalipuram, Shivajinagar and Kamakshipalya revealed that no awareness drive was carried out in the areas.