The India Meteorological Department (IMD) has said that the South West monsoon would arrive in Kerala two days earlier than usual, this year.
However, various types of fevers and infectious cases have hit the state even before the onset of monsoon and is rapidly increasing, beyond control. According to the reports, Kerala have turned into a capital of infectious fevers. Dengue fever has been confirmed on 189 people within the last two days. Different kinds of fevers have affected over 8 lakh people in five months and more than 60 have died. While one person died from H1N1 last year, 36 persons have lost their lives this year even before the start of monsoon. The apparent rise in the death rates during the months of April and May show that Kerala have turned into a hub of diseases with the arrival of mango showers. Medical practitioners and assisting staffs who usually treat and cure the patients too have not been spared. About 44 medical staffs including 25 house surgeons at General Hospital in Thiruvananthapuram have been suffering from fever and one of them have succumbed to death.
Every Keralite knows that lack of sanitation trigger the spread of infectious diseases. Every year with the onset of monsoon, contagious illnesses grip the people to frightening levels. When the illnesses begins to pop, then starts the vigorous awareness campaigns and warnings. Despite being aware that vigilance and taking proper precautions are the right preventive measures, people carelessly fail to take the necessary measures, including scientific safety schemes for the prevention of diseases. The approach of the government machinery on the other hand is extremely lax and inefficient. It was due to the failure of adopting cleanliness measures prior to monsoon even in hospitals that has turned the Thiruvananthapuram hospital into hub of maladies. When even the premises of medical institutions crowded with patients aren’t kept hygienic, then spreading of infectious diseases shouldn’t be seen as a surprise. The streets and empty public spaces in the state plainly show the extent of fakeness in our hygiene consciousness. So does the government hospitals which have proved that precautionary measures adopted for health are all bogus.
We should rise from our snoozes in order to avoid being a subject of mockery that labels us as a foolish and ailing society living in unhygienic circumstances created by our own actions. The adverse circumstances created makes life impossible not only for humans, but for other living organisms as well. The consequent financial loss too is terrifying. The loss for the agricultural sector when the bird flu affected ducks came to around Rs 100 crore. A huge price will have to be paid for the mistakes we commit in the disposal of solid waste. The estimate that Kerala is double the national average in the rate of ill-health, is alone sufficient to comprehend the severity of insanitation in the state. It shouldn’t be forgotten that the state once, boasted of progressive models in the field of health and education that grabbed national recognition. The sweltering heat and scarcity of water in the summer season are strong signs of warning from the nature. The life-threatening fevers that are rapidly spreading beyond control even before the start of rainy season are also a continuation of this warning. It cautions that the summer and monsoon seasons have destroyed the ‘God’s Own Country’ in such a way that it’s unfit to live. If each and every one of us, and all small and big organisations do not attempt to reclaim the sanctity of our soil and air, the state will soon witness recurrent deaths from viral and infectious ailments. We won’t deserve even a bit of empathy then.