ISLAMABAD – The Capital Development Authority (CDA) has geared up its anti-dengue fever drive in Islamabad with its head announcing an extensive campaign.
Following Chairman Farkhand Iqbal’s directive, Health Director Dr Hassan Orooj called an emergency meeting to formulate an action plan to combat the threat of dengue fever. The meeting was attended by Additional Director Health, Health Officer, Entomologist and Anti-Malaria staff, said a press release. Abdul Sattar, Entomologist briefed the meeting about the Dengue Fever and Malaria in Islamabad. He said that Dengue viruses are transmitted to human through the bites of the female mosquito.
“These mosquitoes breed in fresh water stored in water tank, cans, plastic bags, plants/ flowers pots and old tyres etc”. Director Health said that Health Directorate is keeping a strict vigilance on the situation and told that an integrated campaign to contain Dengue fever in the Federal Capital, Islamabad is already launched in three phases. In the first phase, spray and fumigation were carried out in Katchi Abadi, Urban slum and high Risk areas of Islamabad; in the second channelization of Nullahs/Streams and larviciding were conducted; in the third phase all Sectors, Sub-sectors, Katchi abadis, Green belts, Markets schools, Mosque/Church, Parks will be sprayed and fogged periodically.
So far, the Health Directorate of CDA has sprayed and fogged in 17 Katchi Abadis, 27 Markets, 23 Bazars, 12 Masjid, 03 Schools, 04 Hospitals, 26 Govt. offices, 60 actions in Nullahs/Streams, discarded of tyres from 41 shops, 90 Breeding samples, 04 sub-sectors street to street spray and fog, 340 Houses; 3,500 Pamphlets regarding prevention of Dengue fever have been distributed among the general publics.
Directorate of Health Services, CDA has designed and started preemptive measures to avert the threat of Dengue spread in its municipal limits. In this connection, a detailed plan of action has been prepared and implemented specially focusing on high risk areas.
According to plan, the anti-malaria squad has drained out maximum the larval habitats/ breeding sites including ponds, nullahs and streams.
The Anti-Malaria Squad has been grouped into three teams; Team 1st comprises of eight workers and supervisor is deputed for channelisation of nullahs, team second comprises of two spray men and a supervisor is deputed for spray of high risk area and third teams comprises of two (2) spray men is deputed for emergency spray in high risk area. Channelisation of the blocked nullahs have been done in various sectors of the city. In this regard, Directorate of Health Services, CDA has added Anti-Larval chemicals in 80% nullahs, streams, ponds and other larval habitats. Breeding samples of mosquito have been taken from 90 points. After identification it was found that all the species belong to Culex genera, which can not cause Dengue fever.
Meanwhile, the Capital Development Authority has finally started the installation of first pedestrian bridge at Zero Point Interchange (ZPI) ending its apathy towards pedestrians’ woes.
Started in September 2008, the interchange was inaugurated in July 2011 but despite one year of project opening, the CDA did not install pedestrian crossings leaving the walkers to cross 10-lane high-speed road at their own risk. The CDA had awarded contract for installation of three pedestrian bridges to Heavy Mechanical Complex(HMC) against around Rs20 million each. However the one under-installation has cost Rs8 million as the CDA had already raised its base structure while planning to construct a concrete bridge.
It was later decided to replace the concrete girders with steel structure considering it more durable. The bridge is being installed at College Stop between Zero Point and I-8 intersection as the crossing neighbours educational institutions and involved heavy movement of students.
The intersection has also witnessed several hit-and-run incidents even claiming some lives and leaving many injured during this period while crossing the Avenue, said to be the country’s widest road.
The crime report of Islamabad Police reveals that almost two to three hit-and-run incidents take place in Islamabad in absence of pedestrian crossings or for not using the facility.
However, the wait is not yet over for the pedestrians crossing Faisal Avenue and Kashmir Highway at the Zero Point Interchange as the CDA is mulling to replace planned bridges with pedestrian underpasses.
The CDA authorities plan to construct underground markets in the underpasses without carrying out feasibility work as both locations of sectors G/7-G/8 intersection and near National Monument at Kashmir Highway seem to be unsuitable for commercial activity.
Two more pedestrian underpasses would be constructed in Blue-Area near Saudi Pak Tower and OGDCL building as located near Jinnah Super and Super Markets respectively, both sites witness massive pedestrian movement.