KOLKATA: Encephalitis has taken 42 lives in north Bengal in the last two days, taking the total toll to 102 till today.
"Around 102 people have died so far," West Bengal Director of Medical Education (DME) Dr Susanta Banerjee told PTI here.
The toll from encephalitis in north Bengal was 60 till Sunday.
The DME said that it was a case of mixed infection with Japanese Encephalitis being responsible for around 24 per cent of infection.
He, however, sounded hopeful that the number of deaths and affected people would come down gradually.
"We are hopeful that the situation will come under control soon," Banerjee said.
Banerjee said that the municipalities have been asked to maintain cleanliness and to do fogging of localities regularly to control the disease.
"Awareness drives are also being taken to ensure cleanliness among individuals to prevent spread of the disease," Banerjee said.
From July 7 till yesterday, 60 people died of encephalitis in North Bengal Medical College and Hospital in Siliguri and the situation in the seven north Bengal districts was described as 'alarming' by state Health Services director Biswaranjan Satpathy.
Jalpaiguri district was the worst-hit with rural areas in Dhupguri and Moynaguri being the most affected because of the presence of large number of piggeries from where Japanese encephalitis spread.
Satpathy, who held a meeting of chief medical officers of North Bengal hospitals at Siliguri yesterday, said the number of deaths due to Japanese encephalitis was much higher this year than in 2013 when the figure was only five.
Last year the number of those affected by encephalitis was 385 and the 115 had died due to it, he said.