VIJAYAWADA: Expressing concern over the number of ‘mysterious illness’ cases in Eluru and changing symptoms in the patients, TDP supremo N Chandrababu Naidu has demanded that the State government declare a health emergency in Eluru of West Godavari district immediately.
He sought the government to disclose the results of the tests held so far to find out the actual reasons for the mysterious disease.
In a letter addressed to Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy on Wednesday, Naidu demanded that the government address these concerns and ensure proper drinking water supply through mobile mineral water plants. Fear of the presence of heavy metals such as lead and nickel in drinking water could have a serious impact on the health of pregnant women, children and the aged people, he observed.
“Hence, every resident should be given electronic health cards and they should be monitored on a long-term basis. Apart from providing the best medical care for them, a scientific study should be conducted to find out the root cause of the Eluru illness.”
Underscoring the need to boost the confidence of the patients/people, the TDP chief felt that the fear of what would happen next should be removed. “Access to safe drinking water is every citizen’s right and it is the government’s duty to give them that,” he said. Stating that the Supreme Court had upheld the right to water as a fundamental right, Naidu said Article 21 of the Constitution also states the same. It is unfortunate that the government has failed to provide safe drinking water and sanitation for all, he alleged.
Faulting the government for not opening a ‘helpline’ for the victims till now, he demanded that a ‘special control room’ be set up. The best medical care should be provided to the patients with symptoms such as fits, frothing, fatigue among others. Quick response teams should be formed for providing relief to the victims, Naidu demanded.
Demanding health and life insurance for all patients, Naidu said their health profile should be monitored to avoid future complications. In addition, monitoring of drinking water sources such as water bodies, reservoirs, tanks, and drinking water pipelines and taps should be taken up in all towns, villages and cities across the State. Tests should be conducted on drinking water samples regularly, Naidu added.