Naveen S Garewal
Tribune News Service
Hyderabad, December 8
Officials are suspecting that some pesticides-based chemical is behind the mysterious disease afflicting hundreds in Eluru town of Andhra Pradesh.
Though some test results are still awaited, the government is now convinced that the mystery illness could be due to an organochlorine substance.
One person has died and about 450 others have reported symptoms such as unconsciousness and fainting in Andhra Pradesh’s Eluru.
The situation is baffling health experts.
Analysis of a test have pointed fingers towards chemical poisoning but it is yet to be established how such large number of people became victim of mass inhalation of the chemical poison.
The symptoms of the disease include epilepsy, forgetfulness, anxiety, vomiting, headache and back pain.
It is said that the organochlorine pesticides, which forms part of the spray used for mosquito control, could be the culprit.
The chemical is stated to include Dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane (DDT), which is widely used in anti-mosquito fogging.
The Health Department is tight lipped and wants to reveal the cause of the illness only after getting all lab reports of the tests conducted on the victims of poisoning. The disease was first reported from Eluru city but has now reportedly spread in Denduluru.
The health authorities have already discharged 263 people from hospital after treatment. Some serious patients have been referred to hospitals in Vijayawada and Guntur.