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23rd March- The Hindu Editorial - Part-1 (in Hindi)
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Subhodeep Das
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  3. Evasive Mayawati Her sense of friends and foes is predicated on winning back the larger Dalit spectrum. UBHODESP

  4. The Kerala alert There needs to be greater surveillance across India for the West Nile Virus UBHODESP

  5. The death of a child in Kerala's Malappuram district has drawn attention to the epidemiology of the little known West Nile Virus in India the branch of medicine which deals with the incidence, distribution, and possible control of diseases and other factors relating to health. Though awareness is low, the virus is endemic to several States. The first documented WNV case in Kerala was in Alappuzha in 2011, with the numbers then growing. However, official records do not reflect this, given the difficulty of diagnosing WNV in its acute phase. UBHODESP

  6. This microbe is serologically similar to the Japanese Encephalitis virus, which means a go-to test, ELISA, often fails to differentiate JE antibodies from WNV antibodies. More tests are typically needed to confirm WNV, and while the results appear in journals, they don't always make it to State surveillance systems. This is why, though a 2014 Journal of Clinical Virology paper identified the 2011 Alappuzha outbreak as WNV, with around six deaths, Kerala's health department is calling the Malappuram death the State's first. UBHODEE

  7. Nevertheless, the alert is a welcome move. It means that State health authorities will look harder for the disease. The first sign of its presence came from positive antibody tests among residents of Bombay in 1952. Thereafter, it began showing up in encephalitispatients in many of the places it was tested for, including Maharashtra, Assam and Madhya Pradesh In less than 1% of infections, the virus travels to the brain, triggering potentially fatal encephalitis. Otherwise, it merely causes a mild flu- like illness. UBHODESP

  8. Urbanisation and land-use changes are bringing the virus's zoonotic hosts, such as birds, in more frequent contact with humans Given increased mobility, viruses can hitch a ride to new regions via infected humans and vectors. India's best defence is better surveillance, which will help doctors reach patients early to prevent complications. UBHODESP

  9. The End! UBHODESP

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