At least 15 people in Karnataka's Shivvamogga district have tested positive for the Kyasanur Forest Disease (KFD) also known as "monkey fever", triggering panic among residents.
Areport of the State Health Department says that, "The vaccination drive especially in Aralagoodu gram panchayat limits in Sagar taluk is going on as since December 2018, so far three persons have died due to the KFD."
"The special vaccination drive against the KFD is immediately initiated within 5 kilometres of the spot where the death of a monkey is reported," an official at the Virus Diagnostic Laboratories said.
Authorities have been conducting active fever surveillance across houses in the affected areas as well as distributing an insecticide called Melathion in areas where monkey deaths have been reported.
District administration has issued an advisory to stay at least 50 metres away from a dead monkey.
Monkeys especially hanuman langurs and Macaca Radiata are the carriers of the ticks of disease and their bite to humans spreads the virus.
The virus of this disease was first reported way back in 1957 from Kyasanur Forest range in Karnataka. Hundreds of monkeys had died then and since then quite often this disease has been causing deaths of monkeys and human beings as well.