Remove abandoned vehicles from public spaces, prevent mosquito breeding: Madras HC orders Greater Chennai Corporation

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Chennai: The Madras High Court (MHC) has ordered the Greater Chennai Corporation to remove abandoned vehicles from public spaces in order to prevent the breeding of mosquitoes, ahead of the start of the city’s monsoon. The MHC also asked the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) on what steps have been undertaken in the field of medical research or procuring any medicine in order to combat the spread of dengue. 

This order was in response to a petition filed by senior advocate AP Surya Prakasam, who had sought the appointment of an expert committee to assess the measures taken by relevant authorities to combat the dengue menace in the State.

The petitioner had pointed out that unauthorized parking of vehicles on roads, streets and shelters impedes cleanliness and also becomes a breeding ground for mosquitoes ahead of the impending monsoon.

He had pointed out that parking of abandoned vehicles had given rise to a situation where garbage was dumped in the vicinity and there was waterlogging as well.

This must be seen in the light that India reports several thousand dengue cases every year and also a few hundred deaths, owing to the vector-borne disease.

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The first bench of the Madras High Court, comprising of the Chief Justice AP Sahi and Justice Senthilkumar Ramamurthy directed the Greater Chennai corporation to remove all the unused, condemned and discarded vehicles parked in Chennai city platforms and roads with the help of police and also carry out extensive fogging operations to prevent the breeding of mosquitos and control dengue.

“Even if the vehicles are parked on streets and roads, the Corporation must undertake measures for fogging through appropriate equipment, which can very easily negotiate the fogging even beneath stationary vehicles. Apart from this, the Corporation can make a request to the Traffic Police department for taking such appropriate measures in order to ensure that any such impediments are removed by the Traffic Police Department, so that the cleaning and the health & hygiene work undertaken to buy the Corporation is not impeded”, read the Court order.

Let the ICMR and Union Health Ministry come up with the response indicating what steps have been undertaken in this field of medical research, or procuring any medicine, in order to meet the challenge of the spread of dengue, the Court said.

Given the continuous efforts required in this issue, the Court adjourned the case for January 2021, urging the Corporation to carry on with their work, as directed.

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