Staff Reporter

ALAPPUZHA: Health Minister P.K. Sreemathy has said the indiscriminate use of pesticides in rubber estates and pineapple plantations in Ranni and other areas has led to the extinction of several links in the biological food chain, in turn helping the mosquito population grow unabatedly.

The result was that the mosquito density here was alarmingly high and was such that people could not venture into these estates and plantations.

This was a crucial factor in the high rate of fever cases in the region, she said, adding that the Government would be urged to take steps to prevent such use of pesticides.

Inaugurating a two-day Arogya Mela at the St. Joseph’s Girls Secondary School here on Saturday, the Minister said the fever situation in Alappuzha was being strictly monitored and that a fever clinic would shortly be opened at the Alappuzha Medical College.

Alappuzha was being given top priority in the battle against chikungunya and viral fever.

K.C. Venugopal, MLA, said a comprehensive health package had to be urgently worked out for Alappuzha.