KARACHI - Prevention and Control Program for Dengue (PCPD) Sindh has recorded 589 dengue cases thorough the Sindh province, out of these cases 540 were reported in Karachi alone from the 1st January to 22 June 2020.

The PCPD has registered 252 dengue fever case in January, 125 in February, 80 in March, 31 in April, 49 in May and 52 till 22 June. A death due to dengue fever was also reported in Karachi city this year so far. Out of total 589 Sindh cases, 540 were reported in Karachi Division, 26 in Hyderabad, nine in Mirpurkhas, seven in Sukkur, five in Larkana, and two in Shaheed Benazirabad.  In Karachi Division, 143 cases surfaced in District Central, 142 in District East, 71 in District West, 77 in District South, 64 in District Korangi and 19 in District Malir. However, in 24 cases of Karachi districts were unspecified. Meanwhile, the Municipal Services of Karachi Metropolitan Corporation (KMC) have failed to launch a fumigation drive in Karachi despite the fact that the malaria and dengue cases are rising in different areas of the megacity.

The anti-dengue and malaria fumigation drive could not begin yet despite the lapse of almost six months, putting lives of citizens in danger. The dengue mosquito breeding is increasing due to poor sanitation conditions in the city, as no concrete step has been taken yet to control the prevalence of dengue, malaria and other vector-borne diseases. An official at Municipal Service told that KMC has been unable to launch anti-dengue fumigation campaign due to non-supply of insecticide from the Sindh government.

 They informed that staff, vehicles and machinery were available, but the Sindh government has not provided insecticide chemicals to the KMC’s Municipal Services Department.

They further informed that Sindh Malaria Control Program was responsible for purchasing insecticide chemicals and distributing it amongst the districts of Sindh province as per requirements, but the program management has not been providing insecticide chemical to the KMC since couple of years.   

Prevention and Control Program for Dengue in Sindh(PCPD) is conducting fumigation in selective areas of Karachi after reporting of dengue cases, but the authorities concerned of KMC are unable to start fumigation drive throughout the city to control prevalence of mosquito-borne diseases.

The peak season of dengue is about to start in the megacity and it will continue till December. The major sites of dengue are nurseries, graveyards, lakes, ponds, swimming pools, tyre shops, water pumping stations, hydrants, construction cities, waste and garbage dumping areas. 

Experts have already recommended for launching anti-dengue & malaria and Congo fumigation campaign in high risk areas of the megacity before monsoon rains to control possible outbreak of vector-borne diseases.

In 2019, Prevention & Control Program for Dengue in Sindh had registered 16,925 dengue across the Sindh province out of which 15,709 were recorded in Karachi alone while 46 people were also died of dengue previous year.

Similarly, Sindh Malaria Control Programme had registered more than 14,000 cases across the Sindh province in last year.

Head of Sindh Malaria Control Programme and Prevention & Control Program for Dengue in Sindh Dr MehmoodIqbal Memon was not available for comments.