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Defunct fountains could be cause of dengue

By City Correspondent

GUWAHATI, June 20 - Several fountains in the city that have been lying defunct for months have become a cause of concern for the city residents as they could be the cause of possible outbreak of dengue.

Water fountains and recreational facilities for children have remained inoperational for months at Shraddhanjali Kanan, Nehru Park and Tarun Ram Phukan Park in Guwahati. Moreover, fountains at the State Museum and District Library are also lying defunct for several months.

A security guard at the Shraddhanjali Kanan said, �There are two water fountains inside the park for amusement of the public. But one of the fountains has remained defunct for months and the other one has remained inoperational due to the lockdown. Mosquitoes are seen buzzing around the fountains. No cleaning-up has been undertaken since the park was thrown open for public this month.�

The Guwahati Metropolitan Development Authority (GMDA) which is in charge of maintenance of all infrastructures inside parks, has given contracts to private parties to maintain the parks.

As per the health department, every year nearly 90 per cent of the total cases of dengue in the State are reported from Guwahati alone.

�We have received complaints about mosquito menace in the Shraddhanjali Kanan park. One of the reasons for this is the inadequate drainage system along the boundary wall of the park,� a source in the Shraddhanjali Kanan said.

The Guwahati Municipal Corporation carried out an anti-mosquito fogging drive in the wards of Guwahati city, but the drive did not cover these places of recreation as they were closed at the time of fogging due to the lockdown.

Many people living near the city parks are of the view that the rise in the mosquito count could lead to an outbreak of dengue.

�As no cleaning programme and fogging drive have been undertaken, these fountains are now becoming breeding grounds for mosquitoes. We fear that there could be an outbreak of dengue. We appeal to the authorities concerned to take necessary steps in this regard without delay,� a citizen living near the Shraddhanjali Kanan said.

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