Mosquitoes invade Khulna
After winter ended, mosquitoes took control of Khulna, making life difficult for many city dwellers. Locals claim that the situation has been going on for a long time, with the authorities continuing to turn a blind eye.
Swarms of mosquitoes from nearby ponds, bushes, water bodies, and drains invade houses shortly after sunset, disrupting students' studies, residents' sleep, and other household activities.
This makes them vulnerable to serious diseases, including malaria, dengue, yellow fever and even zika virus, according to physicians.
According to the conservancy department of Khulna City Corporation, mid-February to the third week of March is the mosquito breeding season.
Anwar Hossain, a resident of Alamnagar area of KCC ward-12, said, "I did not see any mosquito control initiative even once this month. I have to spend Tk 360 to 400 every month to buy coil."
City dwellers should work with the city corporation. Otherwise, we will be unable to solve this problem alone due to a shortage of human resources. Besides, the problem will reduce once we finish the ongoing project of excavating drains, culverts and canals in the city.
Jahangir Hossain, who runs a tea stall in Moilapota area, said if mosquito coils are not lit in his shop after evening, the situation becomes unbearable.
"My business usually picks up from evening as customers start gathering around during this time. But I have been receiving far fewer people in my stall lately due to mosquito menace," he added.
He also claimed that he had not seen anyone from KCC conducting anti-mosquito drives in the last two months.
Advocate Md Babul Howladar, member secretary of Khulna Citizen Society, echoed the same.
According to KCC data, the city corporation spent Tk 2.10 crore in 2014-15, Tk 2.50 crore in 2015-16, and Tk 2.80 crore in 2016-17 for mosquito control initiatives.
The budget grows year after year, and in 2021-2022 Tk 3.18 crore, and in 2022-23 Tk 3.25 crore were allocated for this purpose
According to Md Abdul Aziz, KCC chief conservancy officer, black oil (80 percent diesel and 20 percent furnace oil) is being sprinkled in city drains to prevent mosquito breeding. A fogger machine operation is also underway to kill mosquitoes.
"We already bought larvicide, adulticide, kerosene oil, diesel, perfume, furnace oil, light diesel etc... Every day, 31 permanent staffers and 31 temporary ones conduct anti-mosquito drives in all the wards of KCC," said Abdul.
"People should be aware too. Garbage should not be thrown in the drains. Besides, flower gardens, canals and ponds need to be clean," he added.
Contacted, Mayor Talukder Abdul Khaleque said, "City dwellers should work with the city corporation. Otherwise, we will be unable to solve this problem alone due to a shortage of human resources."
"Besides, the problem will reduce once we finish the ongoing project of excavating drains, culverts and canals in the city," he added.