Dengue seems to be getting out of the administration’s control in the garrison city as 50 more residents of Rawalpindi went down with the mosquito-borne disease in a single day on Sunday.
The fresh cases took the city’s overall dengue tally over the last two months to 461. Most dengue patients reported on Sunday were taken to Holy Family Hospital in Satellite Town while the Benazir Bhutto Hospital, Murree Road, and the District Headquarters Hospital, Raja Bazaar, admitted 16 and 10 such cases respectively. Fearing high dengue incidence in the city this season, doctors said the government had yet to take effective preventive measures against the disease while the citizens were not taking the threat seriously.
However, more and more people from Satellite Town, Sadiqabad, Muslim Town and Glass Factory areas are reaching the city’s three major government hospitals with dengue symptoms. Doctors blame the situation on the administration’s failure to ‘properly spray the areas with anti-dengue chemicals’. They also insist the administration has opted not to spray chemicals in the city and instead used diesel as a larvicide though it’s considered an infective way to kill the dengue-causing mosquito larva. A former naib nazim confirmed the doctors’ claim. “I’m a witness to the spray of diesel. To the best of my knowledge, they (administration) have enough money in the kitty but they opted for diesel with reasons not known to us, the people,” said Nasir Mir from Dhoke Ratta.
He said the government should adopt preventive measures mandatory under local government ordinance. He said it was the duty of the civic body to spray in houses to kill the dengue and malaria mosquitoes before the start of monsoon every year.
When contacted, Commissioner Zahid Saeed said the local administration had been directed to start fogging in the affected areas and all the departments were on their toes. He said the Indoor Residual Spray (IRS) had also been started in the affected areas and teams formed to check work of the officials. -dawn