dengue awareness campaign
West Bengal records highest dengue deaths, positive cases in India in 2016 Pictured: School students participate during an awareness campaign rally against 'Dengue Fever' in Kolkata on Aug 6, 2016.IANS

West Bengal has recorded the highest number of deaths in India due to dengue in 2016, with 60 people dying of the disease so far this year. The state had recorded 15 deaths caused by dengue during the same period in 2015.  

In Darjeeling alone, 56 people have contracted the disease, including 11 from Darjeeling Hills. The number of positive dengue cases is five in Cooch Behar, three in Alipurduar, four in Jalpaiguri, three in North Dinajpur and 70 in South Dinajpur, respectively. Ten cases have been reported in Malda.

Darjeeling district chief medical officer of health, Asit Biswas, confirmed that the number of deaths in the district in 2016 is higher as compared to 2015. 

"There were 56 dengue positive cases reported till September 14 in Darjeeling, of which 33 from SMC. Of 56 cases, 23 have travel history from South Bengal. We're taking all necessary measures to deal with this," he told ANI. 

To counter the spread of the mosquito-borne disease, Siliguri Municipal Corporation (SMC) will conduct an intensive awareness campaign on dengue, he said. "We will start door-to-door survey to get proper information on dengue cases and will also conduct meet with SMC and other health officers," Biswas added. 

"We don't have complacency, but have instructed all staff, employees and health workers so that they can do the needful. We have also asked counsellors to organise health camps and health awareness programmes," Siliguri mayor Asok Bhattacharya said.

After West Bengal, Odisha and Kerala have the highest number of dengue deaths in the country this year.  

Also affected by dengue and chikungunya is Delhi, where the state government was criticised after health minister Satyendra Jain quoted Google to say that chikungunya doesn't kill. 

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