Chennai Mayor Saidai Duraisamy on Friday hit out at DMK leader M K Stalin for failing to initiate action to control cholera and diarrhoea when he was a Mayor as well as Deputy Chief Minister and ruled out any deaths due to the two diseases in the city during the current AIADMK regime, during a meeting of Councillors on Friday at the Chennai Corporation.
“There are no deaths due to cholera and diarrhoea after I took office,” the Mayor said, while charting out the figures of cholera and diarrhoea deaths during the 68 months (1996-2002) when Stalin was Mayor and from 2006-2011 when M Subramaniam was Mayor, sparking protests and walkout by DMK councillors.
Reacting to a query raised by DMK Councillor Pushparaj from ward number 71, the Mayor said that from November 2011 to August 20, 2012, there has been no deaths due to cholera and diarhoea. However, he admitted that 1,793 people suffered from diarrhoea and 136 people had cholera during this period.
But, it was the figures during the DMK regime that sparked protests from the DMK flanks. “From 1996-2002, when DMK leader M K Stalin was the Mayor, 23,732 people were admitted to hospitals due to diarrhoea and 8,777 had cholera. Among those 52 died due to diarrhoea and 15 due to cholera,” he said as DMK councilors stood up and protested.
This resulted into a verbal duel between DMK and AIADMK councilors. “I challenge you to prove if the facts are wrong. I have evidence and if the facts are wrong I am ready to face any action,” the Mayor told the DMK councillors, who staged a walkout.
Hailing the AIADMK regime for initiating steps to control the disease, he said adequate measures were taken to control the menace of flies and a drive was launched by Chennai Corporation to curb it. He also said after the expansion of city limits to 200 more wards, 27 cases of cholera were detected till July and it was later reduced to seven by August 20 this year.