Fri, Oct 21, 2016 | updated 02:53 AM IST

Japanese Encephalitis claims 19 lives in Odisha's Malkangiri district

Updated: Oct 01, 2016 07:54 IST

Malkangiri (Odisha) [India], Oct.1 (ANI): Panic has gripped several villages in Odisha's Malkangiri district after 21 infants lost their lives to Japanese Encephalitis (JE). Another 50 are said to be infected.

Five deaths have been reported in the last 48 hours and the worst affected areas are Kalimela, Pandripani and Korkunda.

"A team of doctors had come to give medicines, but it has not worked. We are unable to understand what this disease is. So, we are taking them to doctors. Six infants have died while undergoing treatment at the hospital, while two others died while being shifted to Berhampur," said Erama Padiami, a local resident.

Out of the 40 samples sent for investigation, 15 have tested positive. The state government had earlier dispatched a team of doctors from the MKCG College in Berhampur to treat patients.

Symptoms of Japanese Encephalitis include fever, nausea and fatigue.

A few villagers, owing to their superstitious beliefs, have turned to 'tantriks,' after they felt that the medicines had failed to cure their children.

"I had taken my child to the hospital but the condition didn't improve. So, I went to a tantrik, who performed some rituals. My child's condition has improved now," said Samari Madhi, a local resident. (ANI)