Maharashtra to vaccinate cattle for free amid lumpy skin disease

The Animal Husbandry Department said that Rs 1 crore should be made available from the District Planning Committee for each district for the procurement of vaccines and medicines useful in curbing the ailment.

PTIUpdated: Tuesday, September 13, 2022, 04:04 PM IST
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The Maharashtra Animal Husbandry Department, in a bid to control the rising cases of lumpy skin disease in cattle, has directed authorities of all districts to ramp up the vaccination which will be offered free of cost.

While speaking to the reporters in Mumbai on Tuesday, Sachindra Pratap Singh, the state commissioner for Animal Husbandry and Dairy Development Department, said, "The Maharashtra government has decided to offer vaccination against lumpy skin disease virus for free with 50 lakh vials to be made available from the next week," further adding that the farmers will not have to pay any charges for the vaccination of cattle.

"The state government is going to receive 50 lakh vials of the vaccine against the lumpy skin disease virus," Singh said.

In a press release shared on Monday, the department informed that over 5,51,120 livestock in 1,755 villages within a five-kilometre radius of the infected area have been vaccinated. It also said that 1,520 infected livestock out of 2,664 in the affected villages have recovered after receiving treatment.

"The lumpy skin disease among cattle is caused by a virus. If not treated in time, it turns fatal. More than 50,000 infected cattle have died in Rajasthan of this disease. Similar cases have been reported from Punjab and Haryana as well," said an official.

Sachindra Pratap Singh stated that the disease was spreading rapidly in the state, adding that there was a need to raise public awareness on a large scale.

"In order to keep the mortality rate down due to lumpy skin disease in Maharashtra, a batch of 10 lakh vaccine doses has been received to vaccinate cows within a radius of five km of an affected area," the release said.

The department added that Rs 1 crore should be made available from the District Planning Committee for each district for the procurement of vaccines and medicines useful in curbing the ailment.

"A vaccination campaign should be conducted in collaboration with private livestock supervisors to control the disease and their services should be taken on a remuneration basis. Vacant posts in the animal husbandry department must be immediately filled on a contract basis," the release said.

The Eknath Shinde-led government has already declared the whole state a "controlled area" in order to curb the spread of the disease. It has banned the holding of markets, races and exhibitions connected to cattle.

"All farmers should avail free treatment for their affected cattle at their doorstep by contacting government veterinary dispensaries nearby and livestock development officers," he said.­­­

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