LAHORE - A lot of rumours are in the air about the fast spreading dengue, considered the severest epidemic that hit the city in decades, Pakistan Today has learnt. The first incidence of dengue fever was reported in 2003 in Lahore with an earlier outbreak in Karachi almost a decade ago. The disease reappeared in 2006, hitting on alternate years until 2010 and returning with even greater fury this year. Medical experts have different theories regarding the arrival of dengue mosquito in Pakistan, with many believing that back in the 1990s, it spread in Delhi during a sports event and those returning from there took dengue to Pakistan. However, people at large from different strata of the society have formulated different theories about the arrival of the deadly mosquito which was not here only a decade ago.
A banker, Ahsan Manzoor, thinks that it came with used tyres imported from East Asia, which were initially banned.
“When those countries discard the tyres, we import it for use not realising that they could bring diseases like dengue, as all mosquitoes came in those containers,” he added. A housewife from DHA however believed that the virus came from Africa in containers. “The virus initially hit Africa and reached Thailand and from there came in containers to Pakistan,” she added.
Many others however consider it one of the worst forms of bioterrorism with some foreign hand involved in it. “Just look at the route of all flights coming from abroad.
They fly over DHA, Model Town and Cantt; the three most hit localities in the city, right before landing. It is possible that the planes, before landing, drop dengue mosquitoes from the tyres chamber. The fact is obvious from the incidence of dengue in these localities,” a female doctor from Mayo Hospital said.
Many others further think it to have come from NATO containers. “The NATO containers come with all kinds of stuff and recently a scandal also came to light showing they are not even properly checked.
These containers pass through Pakistan and stay at various stations before reaching Afghanistan. It is possible that the dengue mosquito came from NATO containers,” Nasir, a BCom student, said.