A mystery fever that has claimed more than hundred lives in past four weeks in Kanpur, is forcing mass exodus from the villages in its vicinity.
The worst affected villages in the region include the villages of Ghaar and Pulandar where from about 300 families have already moved out.
The situation in these two villages is grim with the mysterious disease having already infected over one thousand people belonging to about eight hundred families who reside in Ghaar and Pulandar villages.
At least 40 people have reportedly died of the mysterious disease in past few days.
The people of these villages, who mostly work as labourers in brick kilns, are selling off their brass utensils and other valuables before migrating to Kanpur city.
Some of them like Veerendra Kumar from Nariha village are scared to stay back in the village.
"We are moving towards the city as the mystery disease has spread across the villages and we won't return till the time the situation returns to normal," said Veerendra.
Unhygienic conditions prevailing in these villages, providing an ideal breeding ground for the mosquitoes in this rainy season, are also a source of worry.
Many patients suffering from mysterious fever have been shifted to the main hospital in Kanpur for treatment.
"My daughter had a fever so we brought her to a hospital in the city. We were issued a medical card and administered medicine for fifteen days in a local health centre but as her situation did not improve she was shifted to this hospital and is currently on medication. Her condition had become normal but from this morning the fever has relapsed," said Raj Bahadur, a villager from Badawal village.
The health authorities in the state, while denying that the deaths were caused by Malaria alone, did not rule out the possibility of the mysterious fever being due to water-borne infections.
"Deaths are caused due to fever but to say that they are happening due to Malaria will not be correct. There have been 54 deaths due to the fever. There were reports in media that there are more than 300 deaths but they include deaths due to many reasons including natural deaths," said Ramesh Chandra Agrwaal, Cheif Medical Officer, Kanpur.
The local administration claimed that it has already started relief work in affected villaes on a war footing and all necessary measures are being taken to prevent the escalation of the mystery disease.