Health officials in Bidar district of the northern Indian state of Karnataka have reported scores of cholera cases in several villages since May, according to a The Hindu report.

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Cases have been reported in Humnabad taluka (40), Mustapur wadi village (54), Kallur (16) and Sindhankera (12).

No fatalities have been reported. Health departments are sending emergency response teams to affected areas. Purifying water sources and stopping leaks in pipelines are actions taking place.

Gautam Arali, district Swachch Bharat Abhiyan officer, said they are also encouraging the public to build and use toilets and not defecate in the open, which increases the spread of the disease.

Cholera is a bacterial disease that is most often spread by eating contaminated food or drinking contaminated water. Water is contaminated by the feces (stool) of an infected person or by untreated sewage. Food may be contaminated by using water containing cholera bacteria or by a person whose hands are contaminated with the cholera bacteria.

Often people have mild illness or no symptoms. However, about one in 20 (5%) infected people will have severe disease characterized by profuse watery diarrhea, vomiting, and leg cramps. In these people, rapid loss of body fluids leads to dehydration and shock. Without treatment, death can occur within hours.