Kala-azar continues to plague Bihar
Patna: At least 87 people have died while over 20,000 people have been afflicted by Kala-azar in Bihar during 2010 despite efforts by government and other organisations to eradicate the killer disease.
All 38 districts in Bihar have reported the disease and the most affected are Muzaffarpur, Vaishali, Saharsa, Araria, Purnia, East Champaran, Samastipur, Madhepura, Saharsa and Darbhanga. Eighty people had died and 21,318 were affected by the disease in 2009, Aman said.
The state government constituted a task force headed by former union health minister and BJP MP Dr C P Thakur to work for total eradication of the disease.
The disease spread due to sand flies mostly found in raw mud-soil.
The Kala-azar epidemic in Bihar, he said, had started from a small block and gradually spread to almost entire northern Bihar.
Vaishali was the worst affected district with the highest incidence rate of 5.9 per thousand in 1978. In 1991, the number of kala-azar patients rose to 2.5 lakh in the state prompting a representation to then Prime Minister P V Narasimha Rao.