Every year, the monsoon in Bangladesh brings with it the same headlines of waterlogging, followed by news of outbreaks of waterborne disease.
The issue of waterlogging is very prevalent in Dhaka and the leading cause is the sorry excuse for infrastructure which is the capital’s drainage system. After a day’s rainfall, it is typical for roads in many parts of the city, including Nardapara, Shah Kabir Mazar Road, Monipuripara, Malibagh, Modhubag, Nagarbari, Chairmanbari, Pranpara, Bashundhara R/A, and Badda, to be submerged.
In early June, the Dhaka North City Corporation (DNCC) and Dhaka South City Corporation (DSCC) recovered 26 canals from illegal occupants, which has led to a slight improvement from the dire situation of previous years.
This year, the city corporations have also taken the initiative to repair damaged canals by allowing stagnant rainwater to drain into the rivers surrounding the capital. Even so, waterborne diseases, especially dengue cases, are on the rise in areas prone to waterlogging.
So far, 3,759 cases have been recorded this year alone, according to the Directorate General of Health Services (DGHS), with a total death toll of 16. As of Sunday morning, 116 people have been hospitalised in the capital due to dengue fever.
Per reports, 387 patients are receiving treatment right now across Bangladesh, with 314 in the capital alone.
Why aren’t city authorities ramping up vector control efforts to stop the spread of dengue? Needless to say, the measures taken by officials to curb the spread of dengue or provide treatment to those less fortunate have been insufficient for the city’s needs.
It is truly disappointing to see the limited effort made to rectify the waterlogging situation during the rainy season. This inaction has the consequence of making the capital and the areas surrounding it more prone to dengue outbreaks.
Reporter's Age: 17 District: Dhaka