More than half of the chikungunya cases in the country are suspected to be from Karnataka.
According to National Vector Borne Disease Control Programme (NVBDCP), Karnataka has recorded around 25,800 clinically suspected cases of chikungunya out of 47,500 cases across the country. The state is followed by Gujarat (5,896) and Maharashtra (4,727)
The number of chikungunya cases increased steadily from 2011 (1,941) to 20,700 in 2015 and then down to 15,600 in 2016. This year saw the all-time high of 25,829 cases from January till November.
"While 25,000 cases are suspected, we have registered around 2,300 cases of chikungunya," said Dr Prakash Kumar, deputy director, NVBDCP.
He added that Karnataka has been reporting cases diligently, which includes the numbers from both private and government hospitals. The numbers are increasing also because of the severe rain this year. People have been storing water on the premises of their homes, leading to mosquito breeding, he said. Doctors from the city said that they have been receiving more number of cases than the previous years for chikungunya.
"Despite knowing the perils, people store water in containers near their homes. Open drains and construction sites too have turned mosquito breeding grounds," said Dr Veerendra B Sutar, consultant, internal medicine, Narayana Multispeciality Hospital.
"We had intensified our surveillance activities. Our health workers went from house to house for surveillance of mosquito breeding. Larvicidal spray was also used to reduce breeding," said Dr Prakash.
He added that the government had launched a programme "Nagarigare Ondu Savaalu" (A questionnaire for city residents), where health workers ask people questions about dengue and chikungunya and clear their doubts.