When dengue made inroads into Bollywood

With the arrival of monsoons, the weather becomes damp, puddles form on streets, sewers and drains fill up, making it ideal for the dengue-carrying mosquitoes to breed. Hence, there is a sharp rise in the disease immediately after the monsoons. Aedes aegypti mosquito, which carries the dengue virus, also breeds in stagnant water in household – bathroom, kitchen, coolers, potted plants etc. Dengue is now endemic in India and every year many people suffer from it and some even die of the disease. Even celebrities who apparently live in cleaner surroundings, fall prey to the disease.

Recently, actress Zarine Khan became a victim of dengue after she was diagnosed with the virus. Zarine, who is working on Ananth Narayan Mahadevan’s ‘Aksar 2’, complained of weakness and body ache, accompanied by high fever. She was rushed to the hospital where tests revealed she had dengue. 

Earlier in this month, Vidya Balan was also diagnosed with the vector-borne disease. The actress was shooting in the US for ‘Kahaani 2’ and felt unwell soon after returning to Mumbai. After a few tests, dengue was detected and she was put to bed-rest for 10-15 days. Vidya was recuperating well and last week tweeted, “Good morning all. Thank you for the genuine concern, wishes, prayers, love and jokes. I’ve been resting at home and am recovering well.”

Model-actress Pooja Hegde, who made her Bollywood debut with Hrithik Roshan starrer ‘Mohenjo Daro’, fell prey to the disease just a month before her big release. After feeling unwell for a few days in July, Pooja decided to undergo a few tests and the results showed the presence of dengue virus. As such, she had to back out of a few promotional events and also cancelled photoshoots.

Nawazuddin Siddiqui, who shot to limelight with his role in the critically acclaimed blockbuster ‘Kahaani’ was detected with dengue in October last year. He was initially being treated for viral fever and throat infection. But when the actor’s fever showed no signs of abating, doctors performed fresh tests leading to the detection of dengue virus.

Model-turned-actress Lisa Haydon, who garnered appreciation for her role in Vikas Bahl's ‘Queen’, suffered from dengue, days before the release of her 2014 comedy ‘The Shaukeens’. Reportedly, she was running a fever during a promotional trip to Delhi. But when her temperature spiked, she cut-short her trip and returned to Mumbai. Lisa was rushed to Breach Candy Hospital where the diagnosis confirmed the disease.

Salman Khan’s younger brother actor-filmmaker Sohail Khan was reported to be suffering from dengue last year. He was given the required medical treatment. However, no one from his family officially said anything regarding Sohail’s medical condition.

Veteran actor Rishi Kapoor was hospitalised with dengue and malaria in October, 2014. He was admitted to Lilavati Hospital and was under observation for a day and was discharged soon after. An inspection carried out by Mumbai’s civic body found that Feng Shui plants in the actor’s Pali Hill residence were the breeding spots of the debgue-causing mosquitoes. 

Ranveer Singh was diagnosed with dengue in September, 2013 and apparently, contracted the infection while shooting for ‘Gunday’ in West Bengal. On his return to Mumbai, he was diagnosed with the disease and was immediately admitted to a suburban hospital and underwent treatment for the same.  

At the age of 80, renowned filmmaker Yash Chopra lost his life to Dengue in October 2012. He suffered a bout of dengue fever, which lead to multiple organ failure. He was getting treatment at Lilavati Hospital where he breathed his last.