Cholera mitigation campaign launched

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Guthi, a non-governmental organisation, has launched a cholera mitigation campaign with a slogan of "Build Good Habit, Drink Pure Water’ in the assistance of the Nepal government, UNICEF and UN-HABITAT. "Every year, cholera, diarrhoea and other water-borne diseases break mostly in the rainy season. To prevent such diseases, people should apply the techniques to purify drinking water," said experts speaking at the function that began at Ganabahal unit of Nepal Red Cross Society. According the figures from Valley-based hospitals, 4,000 people suffered from diarrhea last year. Among them, 250 people suffered from cholera and five of them died. Most of the victims were children. In the current year, according to records of Teku Hospital, 200 people were found to have caught cholera. "These diseases have been breaking out mainly due to pollution. But we should not keep quiet; we should take initiatives to prevent them," said Dr. Roshan Raj Shrestha, Chief Technical Advisor to UN-HABITAT. At the same programme, UNICEF’s representative Larry Robertson said, "It is necessary to make people aware and keep the environment to check water-borne diseases." Deputy General Manager of Kathmandu Upatyaka Khanepani Limited Gyanesh Bajracharya said, "If we purify water, we will be able to control the disease to some extent." Chairman of KUKL Management Committee Hari Dhakal said, "Water is not only a source of life, it is also a cause of death if we do not pay attention to purify water." He said that use of disproportionate amount of chlorine would be harmful. The organisers said they were going to set up mitigation camps at 75 places of Kathmandu Valley mobilising their volunteers to distribute chlorine and raise awareness among the people about use of purified water at hotels, restaurants, schools and houses. At the programme, the organisers had exhibited the techniques of water purification, sanitation and management of household garbage. Director of Guthi Anil Sthapit said, "We will go from door to door to make people aware about cholera and water purification technology."