Municipality steps up efforts to allay fears of residents

Debris from the site of the demolished Jain Coral Cove apartment at Maradu being removed on Tuesday.

Debris from the site of the demolished Jain Coral Cove apartment at Maradu being removed on Tuesday.  

Medical camp and awareness session held near implosion sites at Maradu

After residents in the vicinity of the demolished flats at Maradu complained of allergies and related health issues caused by dust from the implosion, the Maradu municipality has stepped up efforts to assuage their fears.

A medical camp was held near Alfa Serene on Tuesday by doctors and staff from the Nettoor Public Health Centre (PHC). “We have been suffering from sore throat and cold since we moved back after the demolition,” said Hannath K. K., who lives a few metres away from Alpha Serene. Jessy Raju near H2O Holy Faith had also faced breathing troubles and her existing skin allergies were exacerbated by the dust in her house, she said.

Dr. Geena Mohan from the PHC said that the ailments were minor. “Of the 55 patients we saw on Tuesday, most came with symptoms of dust allergy like sore throat, mild temperature, cold and, itching and skin allergies. They have been advised to keep their doors and windows closed and use a mask,” she said. “Their mental state also had to be taken into consideration,” she said. “They have remained tensed and in a state of shock for a while. While some of that has abated, they are still worried about the debris and how long the dust will take to clear.”

An awareness session was held near Jain Coral Cove by Dr. Rahul Antony Simon of a private hospital in the city. “Respiratory infections due to dust are common and people have been advised to report symptoms immediately, particularly if they already suffer from asthma. Long-term exposure to fine particles in dust could be harmful, but the humidity in the State means that the particles settle down faster and won’t remain suspended for long,” he said.

The two demolition agencies have begun separating steel from the rubble at H2O Holy Faith and Alpha Serene, said T.H. Nadeera, Maradu municipality chairperson. Another medical camp with a homoeopathic doctor will be held near H2O Holy Faith on Wednesday, she added. Residents around Holy Faith who had complained of official apathy in the aftermath of the demolition, have been pacified. “Water was sprayed before they began work on the debris on Tuesday, which helped with the dust,” said Ms. Raju.

But residents right behind Alpha Serene who had moved out before the demolition are apprehensive about moving back. “We had decided to live in a rented house in Nettoor for three months. The demolition agency has paid the rent in advance for three months. Considering the dust, there is no question of moving back soon,” said Antony N.J.

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Printable version | Jun 4, 2020 8:28:28 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Kochi/municipality-steps-up-efforts-to-allay-fears-of-residents/article30570498.ece

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