Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal has touted progress made by the state government in controlling cases of dengue fever in the national capital.
Compared to last year, cases have almost been halved with a reduction from 830 to 467. Cases have spiked, however, in the past two months. 190 cases of dengue fever were reported in September and 185 in October at the time of writing. This is unsurprising, given Delhi has withstood the monsoon season in recent months which is an opportunity for vector populations to breed.
Despite the spike in disease cases, the overall reduction compared to 2018 was celebrated by the Chief Minister. “The data showed that there has been a steady decline in cases of dengue in Delhi since 2015, when the disease outbreak had claimed sixty lives,” he said, “but this year Delhi has controlled dengue beyond all expectations, and even the final number of cases is expected to be very low.”
To counteract the spread of dengue, Kejriwal launched the ’10 Hafte, 10 Baje, 10 Minute’ initiative. This is an awareness drive which solicits popular participation. The campaign was launched on September 8th, encouraging residents to be vigilant against stagnant water and to replace it when they find it.
“The key to prevention of dengue is ensuring there is no stagnant water in homes and around, which does not allow the Aedes mosquitoes to breed, and therefore dengue cannot spread,” explained Kejriwal. Numerous celebrities and political figures have voiced support for the initiative.
“Doctors were saying dengue will increase this season but through our campaign against dengue, people of the national capital slayed the deadly dengue and brought it under control,” Kejriwal said at a recent event. The campaign will continue into mid-November.
“The next four months are very important for the health and well-being of the people of Delhi,” Kejriwal said in advance of the monsoon season earlier this year. “We have to make the situation better than last year and bring down the number of cases of vector-borne diseases. We are ready to face any challenges.”