Jabalpur Municipal Corporation spent 1 Cr for mosquito eradication, still, Dengue and malaria cases reach epidemic proportions

If the Jabalpur Municipal Corporation is really carrying out the anti-mosquito drive diligently why are the mosquito population rising and so are the cases of Dengue and malaria?

One of the prominent examples of wastage of public money is the mosquito eradication program of Jabalpur. Over the past three years, chemicals worth 1 Crore has been sprinkled but looking at the number of malaria and dengue patients which is increasing with each year the measures have been insufficient.

No research has been ongoing about the effects of the chemicals on humans. In the year 2019-2020 the Jabalpur Municipal Corporation had purchased Malathion and Kingfog chemicals worth 20 lakhs. These chemicals are mixed with Diesel and used in the fogging machine or sprayed manually in narrow lanes.

In 2020-2021 at the peak of the corona epidemic, JMC purchased chemicals worth 50 lakhs and used them to prevent the spread of vector-borne diseases. That year there was a negligible incidence of malaria and dengue. This year that is 2020-2021 the chemicals were changed and this time JMC brought BTI powder and Pyrethern worth 30 lakhs. However, this year malaria and dengue have reached epidemic proportions.

Huge Costs Borne By The Taxpayer

JMC uses Malathion, Kingfog, BTI powder, and Pyrethern to eliminate mosquitoes. Add to it the cost of diesel, vehicles and employees. Adding all the costs the monthly bill for this exercise comes to about 10 lakhs per month.

If the JMC is really carrying out the anti-mosquito drive diligently why are the mosquito population rising and so are the cases of Dengue and malaria? Experts say that the mosquitoes have developed resistance against the chemicals. Another factor responsible for the rise in mosquito’s population is the Coolers which are present in almost every house during the summer months. The stale water is a perfect breeding place for mosquitoes. The JMC had started an awareness campaign and asked people to remove the stale waters in coolers and other places to prevent the breeding of mosquitoes.

Use Of Lethal Chemicals

The use of more lethal chemicals must be brought to the barest minimum according to Dr Vivek Shrivastav, HOD Forensic department, NSCB Medical College Jabalpur. People should also not come in contact with them. The employees who spray the chemicals are at the highest risk and must be adequately protected by wearing protective clothing.

The incidence of Dengue is slowly coming down. A survey by the District Malaria Officer and his team found larvae in 95 containers from 65 houses. In all 2820 houses were surveyed. Blood samples of 270 persons suffering from fever were taken.  The administration will have to be extra careful in the coming festive season or else we can see a repeat of the Corona second wave last year which had peaked because caution was thrown to the winds and Covid protocols were not followed.