Chennai: A Public Interest Litigation has been filed in the Madras high court to direct the state government to appoint an expert committee of health and other experts in the field of public safety and communicable diseases to consider the efficacy/adequacy of the measures taken by the authorities in tackling the dengue menace in Tamil Nadu.
In his PIL, advocate A.P.Suryaprakasam also sought a direction to the state government to provide free and immediate medical treatment to all the dengue affected people in private hospitals of their choice at the cost of the government and also pay a sum of Rs 10 lakh to all the dengue affected death cases in Tamil Nadu in the year 2019.
This PIL is likely to come up for hearing on Sept 30.
According to Suryaprakasam, there was a dengue epidemic like condition prevailing in Tamil Nadu and huge number of people all over the state was affected by the uncontrolled and fast spreading dengue fever due to the unhealthy and unhygienic condition prevailing in Tamil Nadu due to the wanton inaction on the part of the officials in tackling the dengue which has become a regular feature every year. Only when there was a public hue and cry, the authorities were taking action otherwise there was no preventive action being taken by the authorities in advance to assure the people that their health will be taken care of by the government and there was no need to fear the dengue epidemic and the people need not worry about their health. But on the contrary the inaction/belated action of the authorities in this regard was causing undue hardship/heavy monetary burden on the residents including the petitioner, who was forced to spent about Rs 3,000 last week for blood checking of his wife for the possible infection of dengue virus which fortunately proved negative, he added.
He said the newspapers and visual media have been effectively reporting about the growing number of dengue affected people and in some cases resulted in death of 3 young children. In spite of advance warning by experts and past experience the authorities seem to be not woken up from their deep slumber and only when everything goes out of control and when high court interferes only they were taking action which was too less and too late.
Right to life was a fundamental right guaranteed to every citizen by the Constitution and by the total inaction of the authorities, the residents in Tamil Nadu were in constant fear of getting infected by engue/Zika/Malariya virus, he added.