In last three days, five people from Debra in West Midnapore were bitten by the insect taking the number of the affected victims to 12. In last one week the situation became worse and this had prompted the state health department to send a special team to the area to monitor the situation.
Another team from the state forest department also visited the spot and started a probe in this regard. The villagers at Rajchandrapur area in Debra had killed the insect that had entered a household. It is a furry insect which is almost similar to a Tarentula. It was learnt that people who were bitten by the insect are suffering from pain and the affected portion of their body is also swelling.
Tarentula is a species of spider which is commonly found in South America and Africa. According to the forest department officers, there is no fear of death for the patients bitten by Tarentula. There are 100 types of Trentula in the world. The big size insects are found Africa, South America, some parts of Asia and Australia. It is also found in India.
One such species is found in West Midnapore district which are generally black in colour. Few years ago some villagers fell ill in Burdwan after they were stung by Tarentula.
According to the district administrative officials the insects were coming from the adjacent areas of the Kasai river and as a result of this most of the victims are the people residing close to the river.
The victims have currently been undergoing treatment at Debra primary health centre. The doctors there thought initially that the patients might have been bitten by snakes as during this time of pre-monsoon rain many people from the districts of East and West Midnapore, Howrah, Hooghly, South 24-Parganas are often bitten up by snakes.
But during the treatment they found that the symptoms of patients were quite different than that of the snake victims. They could not trace out which insects have bitten the patients. The whole confusion came to light when some of the patients’ relatives brought to the hospital the dead insects and showed them to the doctors.
According to district officials, around 12 people have become the victims of the unidentified insect.
Among the other patients, a 15-year-old girl Rupa Dhal had been shifted to Midnapore Medical College and Hospital on Saturday as her condition deteriorated.
It was learnt that her condition was deteriorated as she was administered with anti snake venom.
Her family members told the doctors that a furry insect looking like a big size spider was found from the room where the girl was stung by the insect. A senior official of the Debra primary hospital said that they have been receiving such patients for nearly one and half week.
Some of the patients have been released while some others undergoing treatment in the hospital. Doctors said the most of the patients were suffering from cellulites. The portions of the body where the insects have stung have swollen excessively. They have been given antibiotics.
The district administration has been carrying out extensive operations along the river Kasai to combat ‘Tarentula’ menace.