Fear of contracting dengue fever has gripped Jahangirnagar University (JU) students, after several of them were diagnosed with it.
A fresher at JU’s pharmacy department, U Khein Nu, died of dengue on July 27. Her death caused widespread panic among students.
The day after her death, hundreds of students staged demonstration, demanding action from the authorities to tackle the dengue outbreak.
The university medical authorities started CBC, SN1, IgG and IgM tests for students on July 29.
In just three days, over 800 students have rushed to the medical centre, and nine have been diagnosed with dengue.
However, those who have not shown any symptoms, are getting tested. At least 300 were tested yesterday and only two were found dengue-positive, said Nazmul Hasan, a lab technologist at the medical centre.
During a visit, this correspondent witnessed a long queue outside the medical centre.
Talking to The Daily Star, Sayem, a master’s student of biochemistry said, “Our final examination has been postponed by a month as one of our classmates contracted dengue a few days ago.” Apart from a few exceptions, all academic activities are in full swing at the university.
Chief Medical Officer Dr Shamsur Rahman said, “We are getting record numbers of students every day, they are certainly panicked. Many are distraught after just catching seasonal fever, and are rushing to the medical centre for dengue tests. We are trying our best to serve them. All kinds of tests are available here.”
Initiatives from the university
The university authority yesterday formed a ten-member “Dengue Observation Cell”, led by pro-Vice Chancellor (admin) Prof Amir Hussain, said a press release.
All cleaners, gardeners and sweepers are working around the clock to keep the premises free from mosquitoes, according to university officials.
Contacted, JU acting registrar Rahima Kaniz said they are concerned about the issue and are working with the city corporation to curb it. To prevent dengue, dorm authorities conducted cleanliness drives and sprayed mosquito repellent at regular intervals.