New Delhi: Two more chikungunya deaths were today reported at a city hospital, taking to three the number of fatalities due to the vector-borne disease in Delhi where the number of cases have mounted to over 1,000 this season.
65-year-old Ramendra Pandey yesterday died of chikungunya at the Sir Ganga Ram Hospital, in what could be the first such death in the national capital.
The other two deaths also took place at the same hospital yesterday and both victims were aged above 60 as well, hospital authorities told PTI.
“Uday Shanker of Dwarka was admitted on September 11 and he died on September 12. His RT-PCR test for chikungunya had come positive. He had come to our OPD and then admitted.
“Ashok Chauhan, 62, from Aligarh also died of chikungunya yesterday. He too was admitted in ICU on September 11 and his RT-PCR test came positive,” a senior official of the hospital said.
Pandey, who was referred from a Ghaziabad hospital, had succumbed to the disease at the hospital at 4 AM after suffering chikungunya with sepsis.
Doctors say that chikungunya is not a life-threatening disease in general, but in rare cases leads to complications that prove fatal, especially in children and old persons.
Incidentally, one suspected chikungunya death has also been reported at the AIIMS, but hospital authorities are yet to confirm it.
“We are yet to confirm if the death was due to chikungunya. But till then it is a suspected case,” AIIMS spokesperson Amit Gupta said.
According to reports, the “chikungunya death” at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences took place sometime in September and five persons have also “died of dengue” this month.
Chikungunya cases in the national capital have sharply risen to over 1,000 this season, marking a jump of nearly 90 per cent from its count last week.
According to a municipal report released yesterday, at least 1,057 cases of this vector-borne disease have been recorded till September 10, however, hospitals in the city altogether are reporting much higher number.
Authorities at the Sir Ganga Ram Hospital said, Pandey was kept under the care of a senior specialist in the Department of Medicine and a team of doctors from the Internal Medicine-ICU.
Lalit Dar of Department of Microbiology at AIIMS said, “At our laboratories, 1,360 chikungunya blood test samples have tested positive till yesterday. Cases are rising and more and more people are getting affected.”
Delhi government blames LG, MCD for chikungunya
The Delhi government on Tuesday blamed Lt. Governor Najeeb Jung and BJP-controlled municipal bodies for the spread of chikungunya in the capital.
Delhi Water Minister Kapil Mishra demanded to know why no fogging had been done this year by the three wings of municipal corporation.
“Where is LG who has proclaimed himself as government, three mayors, seven MPs, 272 councillors now? All are busy protesting,” he tweeted.
The reference was to a Delhi High Court decision of August 4 which ruled that the Lt Governor would be in-charge of administrative affairs in Delhi and not the elected government.
All the Mayors and MPs in Delhi are also from the Bharatiya Janata Party.
Delhi’s Health Minister Satyendar Jain accused the BJP-controlled civic bodies of not taking preventive steps to control the spread of vector-borne disease.
Jain said the Delhi government hospitals were “fully capable” and well equipped to treat the patients.
The minister’s remark came after a 65-year-old R. Pandey succumbed to chikungunya on Monday at the Sir Ganga Ram Hospital.
Jain, who is now in Goa, said: “We are taking every necessary step and proper care from our (Delhi government’s) side.”
“It is the Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) that has to take preventive steps like fogging and sanitation in the city to check the spread of dengue and chikungunya.
“The three civic bodies are not performing their duties properly to keep Delhi clean,” the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leader said.
Jain added that the patient who died of chikungunya was from Uttar Pradesh.
“Lots of patients arrive in the national capital in critical condition. I am going back to Delhi today (Tuesday) to take stock of the situation,” he said.
Mishra, meanwhile, appealed to the people of Delhi not to panic and warned private hospitals not to deny treatment to patients.
“All private hospitals and nursing homes need to ensure that they are not denying treatment and not creating panic. Any violation will invite strict action.”
Mishra wanted to know what happened to all the money that was released to the MCD.