Have taken steps to control mosquito infestation, vector borne diseases: corporations to HC

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New Delhi, May 28 (PTI) The three municipal corporations in the city told the Delhi High Court on Friday about the steps, like inspections, spraying insecticides and public awareness campaigns, taken by them to control mosquito infestation and prevent vector borne diseases like malaria, dengue and chikungunya in the national capital.

The steps taken by them were placed, by way of affidavits, before a bench of Chief Justice D N Patel and Justice Jyoti Singh which listed the matter for hearing on July 27 as measures taken by other authorities, including Delhi government, were not on record.

The court also made the Delhi Jal Board a party in the matter and asked it to file an affidavit indicating the steps taken till now and the future road map for preventing vector borne diseases.

It issued similar directions to all the other authorities who have not yet filed their reports or affidavits.

DJB was made a party after the lawyer for one of the corporations said it was responsible for desilting drains in various areas.

The court was hearing a PIL initiated by it, concerned over the mosquito infestation in the national capital and the possibility of rise of vector borne diseases. amidst the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, if the situation was not controlled immediately before the onset of monsoon.

While initiating the PIL on May 24, the high court had said that on account of the prevailing pandemic, the steps to be taken by the Delhi government and civic authorities have taken a back seat and they needed to pull up their socks.

'All of us are seeing the mosquito problem. Let's be aware of it. If people get dengue or something and they need to be hospitalised in COVID times, it will multiply the problem very very badly,' the court had said.

The court had directed the Delhi government, the three MCDs, Delhi Cantonment and New Delhi Municipal Council to file their status reports on the steps already taken and to be undertaken on mosquito infestation.

In its affidavit, the North Delhi Municipal Corporation (NrDMC) has said that till May 27 there have been two cases of malaria, two of dengue and no cases of chikungunya in areas under its jurisdiction.

It further said that it was taking all the measures, like focusing on health education and community awareness, to control vector-borne diseases.

Besides that it carried out house to house inspections, dealt with mosquito breeding wherever it found the same, conducted anti-larval measures like spraying insecticides in drains, stagnating water and residential areas on weekly basis.

It also said that it has sent out lakhs of SMS on private numbers to create awareness about vector borne diseases and vulnerable areas have been mapped out and are being kept under a 'tight vigil'.

It said that it has also issued challans to house owners who were not taking steps to prevent mosquito breeding in their premises, despite clear instructions of the corporation.

Similar steps were also taken by the South Delhi Municipal Corporation (SDMC), according to its affidavit, which said that till May 27 there were 4 cases of malaria, 10 of dengue and two of chikungunya in areas under its control.

The East Delhi Municipal Corporation (EDMC), represented by advocate Tushar Sannu, has told the court that it carried out vector surveillance in areas under its control and also conducted public awareness campaigns in the localities in its jurisdiction.

Besides that, it too claimed to have carried out house to house inspections and anti-larval measures as claimed by the other two corporations.

EDMC has also said that till May 27 there was one case of malaria and two of dengue in its areas. PTI HMP HMP RKS RKS