Music and poetry: Delhi govt's new tools to fight vector-borne diseases
In order to tackle vector-borne diseases such as dengue and chikungunya, the Delhi government plans to ramp up awareness campaigns in the city with the help of folk music, poetry and street play in six languages, including Urdu and Sanskrit.
Earlier, the Delhi High Court had pulled up the government for not focusing on dengue-awareness campaign in the Capital.
The idea behind using different languages – Maithili, Bhojpuri, Hindi and Punjabi, besides Urdu and Sanskrit – in awareness programmes is to maximise the outreach of the activity, a senior Delhi government official said.
For instance, if the campaign is being run in Muslim-dominated areas, such as Okhla, the Urdu Academy will organise poetry recitations, street plays and other programmes in Urdu, the official explained.
The Directorate of Information and Publicity (DIP) had recently held a meeting with officials of the Maithili-Bhojpuri, Hindi, Urdu, Punjabi and Sanskrit Academies for this purpose.
The Directorate asked the bodies to suggest ideas on ways to raise awareness about the diseases.
Besides street plays and poetry recitation, songs will be used as a medium. Plans are also afoot for campaign jingles on the issue.
The official said the jingles would be played at popular places such as gurdwaras, temples and mosques.
"Once all academies submit their plans, they will be placed before Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and his Deputy Manish Sisodia for the final approval," the official said.
The Health and Education departments have also been asked to prepare awareness programmes.
On Thursday, Lieutenant Governor Anil Baijal had directed all agencies to effectively monitor and improve the functioning of 24X7 helplines and update their database to provide real-time information on hospital beds and other details to the public.
At least 125 cases of malaria, 152 of chikungunya and nearly 100 of dengue were recorded in recent weeks in the national Capital.
The Delhi High Court, on May 22, had slammed the Aam Aadmi Party-led Delhi government for its failure to launch public awareness campaign about mosquito-borne diseases like dengue and chikungunya, their symptoms and treatment.
The Court, while slamming the city government, had said: "We don't see a single advertisement on newspapers, boards or jingles (in radio). We are most dissatisfied with the status report. It does not have a word on programmes for public awareness…
"We don't hear any popular public figure making statement on this kind of diseases unlike in cases of polio or cancer," the high court has said.