AT LEAST 50 persons from Jungleshwar area of Rajkot were admitted to civil hospital after they complained of diarrhea and vomiting late on Monday evening and early on Tuesday. While the RMC said no deaths were reported, police said two persons from the area died after similar complaints on both the days.
Hospital authorities said that the stream of patients started late on Monday night of residents of Ektanagar-IV started vomiting and post their dinner. More persons developed similar symptoms overnight and were rushed to hospital on Tuesday. “About 50 patients have been admitted. They have complaints of diarrhea, vomiting, dehydration etc,” Dr Manish Mehta, medial superintendent of civil hospital told The Indian Express.
After the cases came to light, officers of health department of Rajkot Municipal Corporation (RMC) rushed to the Ekta Colony 4 and sanitised the area. “The affected persons are mill workers who live in rented rooms. They say they are drinking water from a public hand-pump in the area. Prima facie, it seems a case of drinking contaminated water rather than poisoning. We have taken samples of water from the hand-pump and sent them for bacterial and fungal contamination,” Dr Manish Chunara, chief health officer of RMC said.
Dr Chunara said that all the patients admitted to the hospital were in stable condition and likely to be discharged by late Tuesday evening. He further said that residents of the area were asked not to draw water from the hand-pump and use only clorinated water supplied by the RMC.
“The area is located on the bank of Aji river and it is possible that contaminated water flowing in the river could have percolated to the tube-well on which the hand-pump has been set up,” added Dr. Chunara.
The health officer said that all the affected persons were natives of Uttar Pradesh who had been residing in Rajko and working in local factories.
While the RMC officers said no casulaties were reported, two cases of accidental death were reported on Sunday and Monday. Police said Kumar Jayprakash Shah (25), a resident of that area was admitted to Rajkot civil hospital on Sunday afternoon after complaints of diarrhea and died that evening. On Monday evening, another resident identified as Malikrama Jahajram (25) also died in the hospital after similar complaints.