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Times of India
06 April 2010
By Rajiv Sharma

Aministration starts cleaning water tank and asks students to vacate hostel and go home for few days
The hostel now wears a deserted look after the students have moved outThe hostel now wears a deserted look after the students have moved out
Around 17 students staying at the Government Dental College Hostel at CST have been suffering from Hepatitis A in the last few days, due to the contaminated water being supplied to the building.

The college administration has put up notices at various places and has advised the students to leave the hostel and go home for the next few days.

Dr Gajanan Tirpe, a third year dental student said that he started suffering from diarrhoea and vomiting about 10 days ago. He went to the nearby St. George’s Hospital for treatment. “They did various tests on me and told me that I was suffering from Hepatitis A that happens due to contaminated water,” he said.

In the next few days, some more students started suffering from the same symptoms and many of them were admitted to the hospital for treatment.

“It was at this point that we realised that there was an outbreak of Hepatitis A in the hostel and it was affecting a large number of students,” Dr Tirpe said.

The administration was immediately informed about the situation. They told the students that they will have to leave the hostel till they take some emergency steps.

Students who have houses in the city and nearby areas vacated the hostel, which now wears a deserted look. Even the college canteen had to been closed for several days, and was opened only on Monday.

When asked about the problem, Dr M G Pawar, dean of Government Dental College admitted that there have been some cases of Hepatitis A in the hostel in the last few days.

“We are trying to clean up the water storage tank that is located on the terrace and also making efforts to locate the source of contamination,” he said.

“They will be taking stock of the situation in the college on April 12 to decide on the further course of action,” he added.

Meanwhile, students said that not enough is being done by the administration to ensure that they get clean drinking water even on a regular basis. “There are not enough water filters available in the hostel, even though there are more than 200 students staying there on a regular basis,” one student said.

Though there are so many students staying in the hostel, there is no regular pest control activity being done.

It was only after the outbreak of the Hepatitis that the college authorities have woken up and are trying to install more water filters in the building. “There was another water filter located on the first floor, but this has been out of order for a long time and no effort was made to repair this,” a student said.

A senior doctor from the college revealed that the outbreak of this disease has also resulted in some of the exams being postponed indefinitely.

“There were some internal exams to be held in the first week of April, but this will be done only after the issue is sorted out,” he pointed out. The college dean assured that he will take all steps to ensure that students do not fall sick due to any kind of water contamination.

“There health is priority for us and we will take all steps and see to they live in a clean environment,” he said.

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