There appears to be no let up in malarial cases here. As many as 1,633 cases have been reported here in the first three months of the year, against 1,088 cases during the same period last year.

According to the malaria control cell in Mangalore City Corporation, these cases emerged out of 17,450 and 15,001 blood smear tests conducted this year and last year respectively, at 58 laboratories here.

According to Deepak Bolar, Malaria Officer in the corporation, there was something unusual about the spread of malaria during this period of the year.

However, District Health and Family Welfare Officer H. Jagannath told The Hindu that there was nothing unusual about it. Dr. Bolar said that malarial cases here normally increased between June and November as it was the breeding time for the malaria-causing Anopheles mosquitoes.However, the mosquitoes continue to breed in stagnant water, mainly found in at construction sites, he said.

He said that earlier, the health workers of the cell were visiting the construction sites to ensure that there was no scope for water stagnation in the structures being raised. But this year, this inspection could not be carried out properly because the corporation withdrew three vehicles attached to the cell on September 3.

Lack o f vehicles

The cell did not have any vehicle for five months. As a result, the health workers could not work as expected, he said and added that the cell had been restored with a vehicle on February 2.

According to Dr. Bolar, 59 malarial cases were reported from the Urwa area last month, followed by 54 cases from Falnir area, 53 from Car Street, 42 from Kankanady, 40 from Mangaladevi temple area and 36 from Bejai area.

Dr. Bolar said that malaria could not be contained unless people cooperated with the officials by ensuring that there was no water stagnation in coconut shells, tyres, tins, flower pots, buckets and the like.

Overhead tanks in various buildings should be kept closed, he said.

The doctor did not favour the method of spraying chemicals on breeding spots to check malaria. Taking steps to prevent mosquito breeding was the best way, he said.

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