Bengaluru Dengue Outbreak: BBMP clueless on vacant post of Biologist!
The Bengaluru city accounts for an overwhelming 61% i.e, about 4,935 cases out of the 8,084 dengue cases reported in Karnataka till August 16 this year. In the midst of Dengue outbreak, the only post of a biologist in the mosquito control unit of Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) which was sanctioned under the Urban Vector-Borne Diseases (VBD) scheme lies vacant. A biologist might have aided in discerning a pattern in dengue incidence and assisted efficiently as well as a targeted treatment.
Besides this, there are no posts of entomologists in the city administration and management to work on mosquito-control actions and the civic body is depending on gang men (those spray insecticides) to implement the actions against dengue outbreak in Bengaluru.
Responding to the concern raised by Tejasvi Surya, Bengaluru South MP, BBMP claimed there are no posts of entomologists in the Palike. Asked if there was any proposal to hire entomologists as well as additional assistant entomologists to monitor vector-borne disease-control measures, BBMP in its reply (dated July 26) claimed there is no such proposal.
BBMP admitted that there was one post of biologist sanctioned in the mosquito-control unit of them under the vector-borne disease (VBD) system which is vacant currently.
Dr. BK Vijendra, BBMP’s chief health officer (public health) admitted he had no clue that the post of biologist was vacant when the dengue outbreak is happening in Bengaluru. he added that he is new to this role and was not aware of this. He didn’t know how a biologist’s functioning in BBMP could ease this situation. He further included that the Palike is reviewing recruiting one assistant entomologist in each of its 8 areas for vector-borne disease-control steps. Nonetheless, several BBMP officers TOI spoke to confirmed they were not even aware of when the post was approved or why it has been vacant.
Jemla Naik, professor, University of Agricultural Sciences, department of entomology, said that entomologists in BBMP could have added value by taking measures and creating awareness among the public about dengue when Bengaluru is suffering from Dengue Outbreak.
he added that monitoring mosquito-breeding spots and guiding and by creating awareness on the public on keeping their houses and premises free from larvae breeding could have been effectively done by entomologists and biologists. The dengue causing mosquito Aedes aegypti hides in silent places, dark backgrounds, and even behind black clothes. There is a need to create awareness to control the Bengaluru Dengue Outbreak!
The above article has been adapted from the original post at Times of India By Sunitha Rao.