THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Raids conducted in more than 6,500 migrant labourer camps in the state have revealed shocking living conditions and a potentially dangerous health situation.
Thirty-two cases of suspected leprosy, 10 cases of suspected filariasis and 232 cases of other diseases were detected, the Director of Health Services said on Friday. Steps had been taken for follow-up examination in the cases, the official said.
As many as 163 children who were examined had either not received vaccination at all, or only partially. In all, blood samples were collected from 4,342 labourers who were suffering from fever. Tests would be conducted for malaria, the officials said.
A total of 6,588 camps were subjected to raids by the Labour, Police and Local Self Government Departments. Officials shut down four camps and slapped 82 firms/camps with notices for creating a situation which could lead to the spread of epidemics. Government officials found the living conditions to be extremely dismal in these camps. As many as 143 camps were issued notices for allowing mosquitoes to breed on their premises while 30 others were served notices for not covering septic tanks properly.
As many as 124 persons were served notices for draining waste water out of the camp and 183 others for improper waste processing mechanisms. Eleven persons were slapped with notices for polluting water sources and 29 persons, for not covering the vent pipe of toilets with nets. Again, 22 persons were served notices on ‘public nuisance’ charges.
The officials confiscated banned tobacco products from 13 camps. The raids would continue in the days ahead, the Director of Health Services said.