New Delhi: The Godrej Group urged the government to include mosquito repellents and other similar products in the essential items list during the ongoing lockdown.
As a trend, malaria and dengue spike during May running up to August and preparation for the malaria season starts from April, it said in a statement.
The group’s FMCG arm Godrej Consumer Product Ltd (GCPL) is a major player in the segment with brands like GoodKnight and Hit.
As per the National Vector Borne Disease Control Programme, India witnessed 3,34,693 malaria cases in 2019 and 19,980 cases were already reported up to February this year.
Presently, the government and healthcare infrastructure are heavily invested to deal with COVID-19, but India cannot be unprepared for malaria and dengue, it said.
During the current nationwide lockdown, only essential products are allowed to be sold.
“…mosquito repellents, personal repellents, liquid vapourisers, must be brought under the purview of ‘essential goods’. This will ensure an uninterrupted supply of household insecticide products and will be easily accessible for families till the lockdown is lifted completely,” it added.
In March, the World Health Organization (WHO) also issued an advisory urging countries to ensure the continuity of malaria services in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, the statement said
“COVID-19 has caused high levels of panic. While we do our best to deal with this pandemic, we should not forget the looming threat of malaria and dengue.
“Indian households primarily depend on mosquito repellents, vapourisers, coils to safeguard themselves. These household insecticides should be included in the items that fall under the essentials category,” GCPL CEO – India & SAARC, Sunil Kataria said.