Anti-immunisation lobby: Kerala likely to deal firmly

Deccan Chronicle.

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The previous government was hesitant to act, allegedly fearing a religious backlash

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KOZHIKODE: Top officials in the health department are expecting a concrete action from the new government to take on quacks and the anti-immunization lobby taking root in Kerala. During the outbreak of diphtheria last year in Malappuram, the health workers had collected all their campaign materials and sent to the health secretary for action. But the previous government was hesitant to act, allegedly fearing a religious backlash.

A complaint filed to the cyber cell also went in vein. “We had sent the audio tape of a 'naturopath' which has been largely circulated on Whatsapp challenging the vaccination policy. The stiff resistance against vaccination was centred on Valavannur. Now it has been expanded to the entire district,” said Malappuram deputy DMO Dr R. Renuka. The audio clip propagated that the vaccination is a conspiracy undertaken for corporates.

“Did any of our doctors or scientists who argue for vaccination give the vaccine to their kids?” the naturopath asks. He alleges that cancer causing elements were present in many serums they use. Further, the audio says that the feticide remains were brought into the IMAGE (IMA goes eco-friendly) treatment plant of IMA in Palakkad and that was being used in vaccination. Actually, the activities of the vaccination-resistant lobby are against the national health policy and it should be treated like that,” felt a senior doctor who requested anonymity.

“Persons who are neither doctors nor scientists are grossly misleading the public. The government should offer them a venue to scientifically prove what they have been claiming. Then only these kind of crap should be exposed,” said Kerala Shastra Sahitya Parishad president and pathologist Dr K.P. Aravindan.