Contaminated water, poor sanitation have always been the causes of many an epidemic in our society. The recent outbreak of Diarrhea that has plagued the locality of Uzanbazar since the past few days is an instance of both public and government apathy towards this problem.
Two patients, including a nine year old boy died and 18 were hospitalised after an outbreak of diarrhea was reported in Padumpukhuri area of Uzanbazar yesterday. The joint director of Health services, Kamrup K C Das said that the numbers are going up with nine more persons falling ill who have been hospitalized. The total numbers of affected person have gone up to 27. He also stated that the reason behind the outbreak is the contamination of drinking water and poor sanitation in the area. Water samples have been sent to the laboratories for testing and tests have been carried out on the patients. A makeshift medical camp has also been set up to provide assistance to the people of the area by the health department.
At a time when proper sanitation in villages has become the new mantra in the country’s Rural Development Ministry such a drive is conspicuous by its absence in Assam. The trend to make rural areas clean by employing scientific methods is gaining popularity in other states, a drive that was inspired by Gandhiji’s dream of a clean and healthy society who believed that sanitation was more important than political independence.
In 2003-04, the Rural Development Ministry had first initiated the Nirmal Gram Puraskar (NGP) to motivate the village folk towards keeping their respective villages clean. The award had motivated thousands of people to follow good sanitary practices. Such a drive should also be introduced in urban areas which are supposedly more aware of sanitary measures.
Developed countries have a very organized system of garbage disposal. Every household are provided with different coloured bins in order to dispose of their perishable and non perishable rubbish which are later collected from the households to the allotted dumping yards or recycling areas. They follow the three R’s of reuse, reduce and recycle which benefits the people as well as the government.
Sadly Guwahatians may never experience such a system due to rampant corruption and red tapism. Added to leaks in the pipe network poor drainage and wearing out of water pipes the future looks grim and bleak. A complete overhaul of all the sanitation measures can only lead to a healthy society.