As dengue continues to fill hospital beds and even consume lives at its most extreme, it is evident that Mumbai needs to look deeply and carefully at the malaise sweeping through the city. Reports state that there has been a significant rise in the number of dengue-related deaths in Mumbai. In the state too, there has been a rise in dengue-related deaths, proving that authorities need to take more action more aggressively than they are doing right now.

With the rise in dengue fever in the city, health departments had issued orders to private hospitals to provide information of all dengue patients to the civic body.

Civic bodies state that they are doing more in residential areas to combat dengue, including starting door to door campaigns. There should be a concerted effort for fumigation in certain areas, especially those most prone to mosquitoes. They must have a checklist about areas most susceptible to mosquito breeding, by looking back at the history of the problem in Mumbai. Fumigation should not be restricted to a few pockets but encompass the city. There have to be regular and stringent fumigation drives by civic authorities and there can be no room for any complacency here.

Having said that, one has to also admit that tackling this problem is not just the onus of authorities but people too. Housing societies must look at dumping garbage and take action on pools of stagnant water which may have accumulated in building compounds, for any reason. Housing Society Committees should be especially vigilant about this, directing members to adhere to this, especially during this time.

Even within houses, people should be especially careful about keeping everything clean, be careful of potted plants that hold water at home, throw out pots and pans filled with water if not needed and do their utmost to keep vessels empty of water and dry. This is one of the most effective ways of controlling the disease. Greater awareness and knowledge of dengue will also help people. Dengue needs to be fought hard and extensively. Let’s begin with a multi-pronged approach and collective responsibility.