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Opposition blames Odisha government for jaundice outbreak

Written by Agencies |Published : January 5, 2015 3:49 PM IST

Bhubaneswar, Jan 3: The opposition Congress and the BJP Saturday blamed the Odisha government for failing to contain the jaundice outbreak in Sambalpur city in the state. Jaundice has already claimed 19 lives while more than 2,000 people have been affected by the disease since May 2014. Union Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan, who visited the affected areas of Sambalpur Saturday, held the state government responsible for the spread of the water-borne disease. He said the outbreak could have been averted had the government taken preventive measures in time. 'The state administration had knowledge about the contamination in water supplied to the residents of the city. Various organisations had also informed officials about this. But the government did little resulting in this situation,' said Pradhan. (Read: 6 challenges to hepatitis prevention in India)

He said the disease taking epidemic proportions could have been averted at the beginning itself if the necessary steps had been taken in time. Odisha Congress president Prasad Harichandan also blamed the state government. He took stock of the situation and visited the patients admitted in various hospitals. 'There are more than 5,000 people who have been affected by jaundice as they do not get pure water in Sambalpur city. It is due to the failure of the government. We ask the government to provide Rs. 10 lakh to families of each of the deceased and compensation to the affected people, who are not being treated in government hospitals,' said the PCC president. (Read: 7 home remedies to relieve the symptoms of jaundice or hepatitis B)

However, Health Minister Atanu Sabyasachi Nayak said the government is taking every possible step to arrest the outbreak. A poor drainage system and damaged water supply pipelines appeared to be the main reason for the jaundice outbreak in the town, which has a population of nearly 200,000. (Read: 8 jaundice symptoms you need to watch out for)

Source: IANS

Photo source: Getty images

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