By Deepika Pandey, PRIA
In Raipur half of the city is under the grip of Jaundice which is dispersing like epidemic in the city. Mostly affected areas are the slums of the city, Dindayal Upadhyay Nagar and Waman-rao lakhey Nagar ward area. More than 25 deaths have been followed, out of which half of the patients were pregnant women, died due to this disease.
Although the ultimate cause of scattering of this syndrome was not actually diagnosed but it is estimated that the poor sanitation & sewerage system of the city, pitiable water supply system and lack of proper cleanliness of drains, canals & water tanks are responsible for the dispersion of the disease because after notifying 2-3 cases of jaundice from DD Nagar, the Member of Parliament Mr.Ramesh Baise supervised the area and investigated the water tank where he found worms and germs in the water and a thick layer of sludge within the water tank. After testing the water, the virus of Hepatitis E & A found in the water responsible for Jaundice, which is a water borne disease occur due to the consumption of contaminated water affecting the liver and reduces its tendency to filter, ultimately resulted into various diseases like liver psorisis etc. Chief Minister Dr.Raman Singh has allotted 19 crores 68 lakh rupees for the repair and maintenance of the pipelines and sewerage system in Durg and Raipur forJaundice free campaign, 41 lakh 73 thousand rupees was allotted to Raipur Municipal Corporation and 9 cores 26 lakh 42 thousand rupees to Durg Municipal Corporation.
In this situation to address the role of civil society, a workshop was organized on “The role of civil societies in current situation of Jaundice affected people & area for better health” participated by the representatives of different civil society organizations, slum dwellers and the Doctors were also invited to provide information for precaution from this disease. Dr. Biplav Bandopadhyay said that the jaundice basically occur due to the mixing of faecal contaminated water with drinking water the only remedy to get rid from the virus Hepatitis E is to consume boiled water.
It was discussed in the workshop that Municipal corporation is responsible for all this misfortune their lethargic behavior towards providing basic facilities led into the occurrence of this situation. It is the responsibility of Municipal Corporation to provide cleanliness and safe water to the city and to ensure the cleanliness of the sources of water. The following steps were taken as per the discussion in the meeting:
- A memorandum was entrusted to the Governor and the commissioner of the municipal corporation to take immediate action for cleaning the water tanks and other sources of water & to organize health camps at slum level.
- A JANSABHA was organized against the municipality under the banner of Chhattisgarh slum initiative in Budha-talab Raipur and demands were raised for an Integrated Water policy, a Charter from Municipal Corporation regarding the health facility.
- A Public Interest Litigation was also filed in the court against Municipal Corporation for supplying polluted drinking water in the city
PRIA is also a part of the Jansabha where the voices were raised. After the Jansbaha PRIA discussed about this workshop with SICs, they got inspired by this & few SIC’s such as Kashiram Nagar have taken initiative and given application to the commissioner of Raipur municipal corporation to organize camp. The commissioner immediately issued letter to the councilor of the concerned ward to organize a camp in the slum. The camp was successfully organized on 21st May.