Dengue scare in Kochi threatens tourism

November 18th, 2008 - 7:23 pm ICT by IANS  

Kochi, Nov 18 (IANS) A large number of people, including three doctors, are suspected to be affected by dengue fever in this commercial capital of Kerala, worried health officials said Tuesday.There has been an increasing number of patients arriving with fever in Kochi General Hospital, Radhakrishnan, superintendent of the hospital, told IANS.

“Three doctors of the hospital are suffering with dengue. A few other staff members are also down with fever and the test-report of that is yet to come,” said the superintendent.

Ernakulam district collector M. Beena, a doctor, said cases of dengue have been reported but there was nothing alarming and the disease has not taken the shape of an epidemic outbreak.

“The administration is fully geared and has already taken a strong anti-mosquito campaign,” said Beena.

Already crippled by the economic slowdown, the tourism industry here is worried and a dengue scare could well create another dent as the peak season is already on.

More importantly, 5,000 foreigners are expected to witness the Volvo Ocean Race stopover in Kochi from Dec 3 to 13.

The Kerala High Court early this month came down heavily on the Kochi Municipal Corporation for its failure to remove piled up garbage on the streets in the city.

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