Over 48,000 houses in Thiruvananthapuram join fight against mosquitoes

The Thiruvananthapuram city Corporation’s dry day challenge on Sunday, as part of initiatives to control vector-borne diseases, has garnered an unexpected response with photos of mosquito-source destruction activities from more than 48,000 households getting uploaded in the Smart Trivandrum mobile application in a single day.

Buoyed by the positive response, the civic body decided to extend the challenge to one more day.

Unlike the dry day observances in the past, during which health officials from the ward-level provided data on the number of households in which the activities were carried out, the Corporation decided this year to make the people themselves mark themselves as being part of it. As part of this, city residents were asked to upload the photographs of destruction of mosquito sources from their households, with a geo-tagging system to get accurate location-wise data.

As on Monday evening, as many as 48,159 households have participated in the challenge, with 32,184 of them uploading photographs and other details on Sunday and the remaining on Monday. A total of 1,61,882 containers were destroyed, out of which 75,261 ones had mosquito larvae. Parallel to this, the Corporation has also entrusted Kudumbashree volunteers to carry out surveys of dry day activities in each ward, with each ward being divided into 50 to 100 clusters.

People’s participation

“Usually, this is an official-level activity, with the organising of meetings, distribution of pamphlets and source-destruction programmes in some parts of various wards. With this challenge, a large number of people are participating on their own. Since we had an extended spell of summer rain, there are a lot of places where water has collected, leading to mosquito breeding. If a dengue breakout happens along with the COVID-19 pandemic, it can lead to a dangerous situation if people get affected by both these diseases at the same time. So, it is important that the mosquito larvae are destroyed in all parts of the city,” says a Corporation official.

Prizes too

Since the challenge was announced on a trial basis, the Corporation was expecting a maximum of around 10,000 respondents only. The civic body also brought in an element of competition into the challenge, between various wards as well as the junior health inspectors. The ward which wins the challenge will get a cash prize of ₹25,000, while the wards placed second and third will get ₹10,000 and ₹5,000 respectively, which can be spent on sanitation activities in the respective ward.

Harbour ward ahead

The Harbour ward is ahead of the rest of the wards with 3,297 households becoming a part of the challenge, while the Vazhottukonam ward is second with 2,647 households and Poonkulam is third with 2,388 households. The Vellar ward has the least number of participants with 25 households. Pappanamcode and Karamana wards have 27 and 33 households respectively participating. According to officials, the data can be tracked accurately through geo-tagging and the details of the one who uploads. If the same photograph is uploaded from different accounts, it is discarded by the system.

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Printable version | Aug 3, 2021 6:59:39 AM |

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