Jaundice assumes alarming proportions in Cuttack

Cuttack: In spite of the steps taken by the district administration and the Health department, jaundice has assumed alarming proportions in the Millennium city.

Official sources said the number of persons afflicted by the water borne disease has gone up to 40 by this evening with three more patients being identified today.

However, unofficial sources said the number has gone up to more than 70.

From Nua Sahi of Jobra area from where the first case of jaundice was reported on March 16, the disease has now spread to other places like Tala Sahi, Majhi Sahi, Nadikula Sahi and Tinakata Sahi of Jobra area, the reports added.

Locals of Jobra have alleged that though the local MLA, Health minister and Urban and Housing development ministers have reviewed the situation and the district administration and the Public Health department have stepped up measures to combat the menace, there has been no improvement in the situation.

Talking to OTV, Santosh Jena, a resident of Jobra area, said he was feeling weak since last four days and finally came to know that he was suffering from jaundice after his blood sample was tested today.

Expressing resentment over poor health services, he said he had gone to a nearby health camp today but found no doctors there.

Srimanta Das, secretary, Jobra Madhi Sahi, said the district administration and the Health department have failed to prevent the outbreak of jaundice which has spread to other areas.

He said as long old water pipelines are not replaced, jaundice outbreak will continue to recur in Cuttack city.

“Last year, the Public Health department had said it would replace all old pipelines with new ones, but nothing has been done even after one year. Besides, the health camps opened in the affected areas have been closed after the first two days. After an inquiry, I came to know that there would be no health camps in this area as per the instruction of the district administration. I think the district administration wants the disease to be more acute here,” he pointed out.

Bhabani Shankar Mohanty, SDO, Water Supply, Cuttack, said the district administration and Public Health department are making all efforts to bring the disease under control. The Health department has set up a camp and a control room in Jobra since last three days.

“We have formed 20 teams as per the order of the district collector. Besides, we are in touch with the agencies having all equipment with them. After receiving a complaint from any locality, we are moving out there and examining the water pipelines laid on the ground. Besides, we are also examining the underground water pipelines to find if there are any cracks,” Mohanty said.

Talking about the steps his department had taken so far, he said the department had set up 23-24 Syntex water containers with 2000 and 4000 litres capacity in Jobra area with arrangements for loading water on these containers.

Stating that the process of chlorination has started, Mohanty said the Public Health department had collected water samples from 12 places in the city.