Health authorities raced to contain the jaundice outbreak at a Dadar colony after local news papers reported how contaminated water had sickened over 60 residents, some of whom face the prospect of liver failure.
A team of civic officials and health workers inspected the water supply of 80-year-old Palan Sojpal society through door-to-door checks, and distributed chlorine tablets and packets of oral rehydration salts. They switched off the supply from two pipes over suspicion that a leakage had led to tainted water.
The residents had been complaining about water that “smells like rotten eggs” since June, but the BMC blamed it on the society’s own faulty pipeline network. The civic body re-examined the issue with greater urgency and seriousness on Monday following news paper reports.
BMC officials have asked all families in the society to boil water before consumption. It seems the contamination has resulted from an internal problem: the colony’s sewer lines are choked.
It is believed that the issue of tainted water was restricted to the society and there had been no complaints from other localities in Dadar.
Around 200 families live in Palan Sojpal and currently, 50 families have at least one member who is suffering from jaundice. Between June and September, almost every family made a trip to the hospital because of hepatitis E, the virus that causes the disease.
The BMC earlier conducted two inspections at the society after multiple complaints. The residents replaced the pipelines that officials had blamed for tainted water, and also cleaned the society’s tanks. The steps had no effect and cases of Hepatitis E shot up. Though the civic body on Monday cut supply to two suspect pipes, some families fear it’s another misdiagnosis as some houses are still getting water that smells bad and even has worms.