Rashmi Rekha Das

The Odisha unit of Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Tuesday accused the State government of hiding the actual number of deaths caused by cholera at Kashipur in Rayagada district.

A four-member representative team of the BJP led by chief whip Mohan Majhi visited the cholera-hit Kashipur and took stock of the situation. Later, the team addressed a presser and held the state government responsible for the spread of the disease in the locality.

Demanding a clarification from the government, Majhi said, “According to data furnished by the government, nine people died of cholera at Kashipur while in reality, the disease has claimed 14 lives. The situation at Kashipur is alarming. If nine persons have died of cholera, the State government must clarify the cause of the remaining deaths.”

Majhi attributed the spread of the disease to intake of contaminated water and lack of nutritious food. He said in the absence of piped water supply and proper sewage system, residents of Kashipur are suffering from water-borne diseases. 

Moreover, Majhi said, “The real pictures of Kashipur are completely different from the government’s facts and figure. Cholera outbreak happens every year at Kashipur during monsoon. Thus, the government should come up with a long-term plan to tackle the situation as part of its measure to prevent the disease from recurring at Kashipur. 

Majhi further said, “We came to know from enquiry that there is a village called Tikiri where pipe water facility is available. Though pipes and stand-posts are there in other areas, they lack water connectivity. The State government is solely responsible for the outbreak of cholera in Kashipur.”

However, the concerned government officials were unavailable for comment on the issue.