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3 September 2008
New Delhi, India

The malaria deaths have reduced from 495 in January to August 2007 to 299 in the same period 2008, while dengue deaths have slumped from 69 to 19
Dengue and malaria deaths in India have declined this season. The deaths due to malaria have reduced from 495 in January to August 2007 to 299 in the same period of 2008, while dengue deaths have slumped from 69 to 19, the Health Ministry said on Tuesday.

After a meeting of health authorities under the chairmanship of Director General of Health Services (DGHS) RK Srivastava on the vector–borne disease situation in the country, authorities here said, “Till August 31, 15 states have recorded a total of 1,495 cases and 19 deaths due to dengue”.

In 2007, 18 states had recorded 5,534 dengue cases, of whom 69 people had died, reports IANS.

But in national capital region of Delhi, the number of dengue cases has gone up compared to the corresponding period of last year.

A sudden spurt in the number of cases has been reported from Gurgaon where two deaths due to dengue have also been reported. The NCR has reported over 300 cases so far this year.

“The irony is that dengue in Gurgaon has been reported from the posh colonies which clearly indicated that affluent society does not give any heed to health authorities in terms of helping them in eliminating Aedes Aegypti breeding”, a Ministry official said.

It has been observed in the past also that without community participation the density of the dengue vector mosquito cannot be kept under check as the vector breeds in domestic and peri–domestic areas and the society is primarily responsible for its preponderance, the official said.

Some northeastern states like Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland, Tripura and Goa have shown an increase in the number of cases during this period.

“The malaria trend in the country has been showing a marginal decline during the last few years and annual incidence has been brought down to 1.47 million as compared to around three million annually during the last decade”, the official said.

The recent fury of rain, especially in Haryana, Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh and the NCR of Delhi has resulted in a spurt of malaria and dengue cases, the DGHS said.

The recent malaria outbreak reported from Shivpuri district of Madhya Pradesh claimed 10 lives. Early steps taken by the state government has brought the situation under control at present.

There have been reports of deaths after fever from Kanpur rural district. The Uttar Pradesh government has already initiated steps to contain malaria in the district.

Authorities said there was no let–up in chikungunya cases in Kerala and Karnataka. Recently, an outbreak of chikungunya was reported from south Kannada of Karnataka and Kasargod district of Kerala.

Cases of Acute Encephalitis Syndrome (AES) are being reported from Gorakhpur and its adjoining districts.

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