The Zika Virus – Should Bangalore Be Worried?
A new terror rocking the world lately. First being spotted in Uganda all the way back in 1947, the Zika virus initially displayed a set of non-alarming symptoms. Up until the 1980’s, the Zika virus was only capable of causing mild illness. Though the symptoms started to get more severe, the virus was largely contained. It wasn’t until 2007 that the first major outbreak was recorded. This outbreak shook the Micronesian Island states. However, owing to the isolated nature of these destinations, the virus was once again contained and limited.
The Return of the Zika Virus
More recently, the virus has made a return to newspaper front pages. In 2015, we dealt with an epidemic of Zika in South America. Zika hit Brazil fast and hard causing 3,768 cases of Microcephaly (inhibition of foetal development) in under one year. Zika found it’s vectors in the tourists visiting Brazil. The virus has since shown its ugly face in the United States, Europe, and the South East Asian Region. However, Zika didn’t thrive in the west.
The SEA crisis
The main culprit behind the spread of Zika is the Mosquito. Mosquitoes thrive in the tropical belt. South East Asia falls within the confines of this belt. Earlier in 2017, the SEA countries dealt with a rapid spread of this deadly disease. This was alarming to the extent that ASEAN was forced to address it during their Dengue Day efforts.
Zika in India
The Zika virus eventually did make its way to India, however, it hasn’t spread as explosively as it did elsewhere. Three cases have been recorded thus far. Thus, the virus may not be cause for immediate alarm in India. Dengue and Malaria are still much more imminent threats in the country. However, given that they are borne by the same carrier, it may be advisable to contain the combined threat. All efforts must be taken to keep the mosquitoes away.
Bangalore is one of the southernmost metropolitan cities in the country, that being said, the potential for the spread of Zika in the city is immense. Thus, good, regular pest control is necessary to keep the Zika virus at bay.