With a sharp rise in the number of dengue cases in the Capital, councillors cutting across party lines in the three Municipal Corporations of North, South and East Delhi have expressed doubts whether the number of cases reported by the civic body’s Health Department is accurate. During several deliberations this past week, Congress councillors had even asked if the civic body was under-reporting dengue cases to hide its inefficiency in tackling vector-borne diseases.
These misgivings followed media reports with major hospitals – both private and government run – reporting substantial number of cases daily for the past two weeks. On Tuesday, the South Delhi Municipal Corporation’s leaders raised concerns over the number of dengue and malaria cases under its jurisdiction and demanded explanations from the officials in the Standing Committee.
This was followed by meetings of the NDMC and the EDMC later in the week with the Opposition Congress in the EDMC going as far as claiming that East Delhi Mayor Annapurna Mishra’s son is undergoing treatment for dengue in an MCD hospital.
“Mayor’s son Kapil Mishra has been diagnosed with dengue and he is undergoing treatment at Swami Dayanand Hospital, but the hospital authorities have not included his name in the list of those reported to have been infected with the vector-borne disease,” says Congress councillor from Subhash Mohalla Savita Sharma, adding that she raised the issue just to prove that the numbers being provided by the health department are incorrect.
Civic bodies continue to reiterate that hospitals have been directed to report dengue cases and hospitals have been put on high alert. Municipal Health Officer N. K. Yadav said that fumigation activities will be increased in all parts of the city. “This season’s toll is still the lowest we have seen in a decade. It is also a much milder strain of dengue,” he added.