Staff Reporter

PATHANAMTHITTA: The public sector company Oil Palm India Ltd. (OPIL) on Friday distributed Rs.2 lakh to five Government health centres in the viral fever-hit areas of Punalur and Chadayamangalm.

In a statement issued here on Friday, OPIL chairman V.B. Binu said the relief amount was handed over to the hospital superintendents of the Community Health Centres (CHCs) and Primary Health Centres at Anchal, Mannathanam, Kulathuppuzha, Aeroor and Kadackal.

The money will be used to buy medicines and equipment at the health centres controlled by the Local Self-Government Institutions. Minister for Agriculture Mullakkara Ratnakaran handed over a cheque for Rs.75,000 to the superintendent of the CHC at Kadackal, while Mr. Binu handed over the rest of the cheques to the .

K. Raju, MLA, Mathew Jacob, OPIL managing director, and S. Jayamohan and M. Saleem, director board members, were present on the occasion. Mr. Binu said the company had earlier provided Rs.5 lakh as relief to the Government health centres in Kottayam district. He said the company would provide more assistance to the Government in its efforts to contain viral fever outbreak in the State.

Mr. Binu said about 25 per cent of the 1,000-strong labour force were afflicted with either chikungunya or viral fever. He said the company had improved the facilities at its hospital at Aeroor in view of the increasing number of fever cases among plantation workers. The company will provide free treatment to those suffering from viral fever, including labourers and their family members.