BENGALURU: The schools in the city are trying their best to fight the mosquito menace. While some schools are carrying out back-to-back fumigation drives, others are asking the parents to send mosquito repellents.
The precautionary measures come in the wake of the increasing number of dengue and chikungunya cases in the city. Most schools are fumigating their campuses every day while some are doing it twice a week. In fact, some schools have taken up ayurvedic methods to fight the mosquito menace by using neem and loban smoke.
Many schools depend on the fogging done by BBMP, while some elite schools have their own fogging machines and appoint people to fumigate the campus throughout the year.
A school principal from Bengaluru South said, “There is a lot of greenery and open space near the school. As a result, there will be more mosquitoes in the school premises. We could see mosquitoes below the desks.”
Mansoor Ali Khan, management representative of Delhi Public School (DPS), said, “In all our campuses, we do fumigation both in the morning and the evening. Children start coming by 8 am. So we complete the fumigation process in all the classrooms, washrooms and the open spaces and corridors at least an hour earlier. After the kids leave the premises at 4 pm, we repeat the process at 5 pm.”'
However, some schools have asked the parents to arrange for mosquito repellents. Another school principal said, “Some students are allergic to certain chemicals. So we have advised the parents to purchase mosquito repellents and patches. If one patch is stuck on the uniform, it wards off mosquitoes for some 10 hours.”
A management representative from Blossoms School on Hesaraghatta Road said, “We have our own fogging machine. We fumigate not only our campus but also the surrounding areas where there are vacant sites as these are the places where mosquitoes thrive.”
The Associated Management of Schools in Karnataka has decided to buy two fogging machines which can be used by the member schools. D Shashi Kumar, general secretary of the association, said, “If we appoint one person, he can cover at least 10 schools in a day.”
The association has also advised schools to inform parents not to send their children if they are sick. Mansoor of DPS said, “We request the parents not to send their kids to school if they have fever, cough and other symptoms of illnesses.”
To protect children from mosquito bites, one school has made it mandatory for girls to wear leggings. “Girls wear skirts as their uniform, so they are at more risk. Therefore, we have asked them to wear leggings or beige-coloured tights to prevent mosquito bites. We have also instructed the kids to wear full arm jackets or sweaters,” a school principal from Bengaluru North said.
The Department of Public Instruction has instructed all the deputy directors of public instruction to take precautionary measures and to help the BBMP carry out fogging and fumigation.