The local government has announced that nearly 75 people have died from a malaria epidemic that has gripped the state of Assam, and has left more than 300,000 debilitated by its onslaught. The eastern Lakhimpur district has taken the worst beating with nearly 30 deaths and up to 150,000 sick.
According to Health Minister Bhumidhar Barman, this is partly because the sick have delayed in availing treatment from qualified specialists, which has led to deaths.
"Our health staffs are now working overtime in spreading awareness in rural areas," the minister said. He has advised people not be taken in by superstitious beliefs and resort to the treatments of quacks and tantriks, instead to rush to a qualified medical practitioner.