Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Bhubaneswar, May 27:
Spread of jaundice in Puri with Nabakalebara festival of Lord Jagannath round the corner is what has become a major worrying factor for the Odisha government.
The government has decided to conduct regular checks on food products and drinking water pouches available in Puri town and its surroundings.
The decision was taken at a review meeting on jaundice chaired by Health Minister Atanu Sabyasachi Nayak here on Tuesday.
Commissioner (Food Safety) has been directed to take appropriate steps in this connection.
According to statistics revealed at the review meeting 332 persons have been afflicted with jaundice till Tuesday since January last. Out of them 237 are undergoing treatments at hospitals while one has died of the disease.
Puri Municipality has undertaken a door to door survey on this account. Samples are being drawn from drinking water sources by the Public Health Engineering Organisation and Health department on a regular basis and their quality tested. Disinfection of these water sources are being done on regular basis.
Out of 9, 100 tube wells in Puri 1,400 have contaminated water pouring out of them.
Since lakhs of devotees are expected at Alarnath shrine during the anabasara period of the Lords at Shree Mandir, arrangements are in progress for provision of pure drinking water and toilets there.
Nayak ordered to pay special attention for provision of pure drinking water for cooking of prasad at the temple. The meeting decided to take steps on war footing basis to contain jaundice and other contagious diseases.
Among others principal secretary of Health Arati Ahuja, G Mathivathanan and other senior officials attended the meeting.