Published Date: 2017-04-03 16:34:09
Subject: PRO/AH/EDR> Foot & mouth disease - India: (KA) bovine, RFI
Archive Number: 20170403.4944931
FOOT AND MOUTH DISEASE - INDIA: (KARNATAKA) BOVINE, REQUEST FOR INFORMATION
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Date: Sun 2 Apr 2017, 11.15 PM IST
Source: Bangalore Mirror [summarized, edited]
Already struggling to arrange for fodder for cattle even as the state reels under severe drought conditions, the state government is faced with another huge problem - the outbreak of Foot & Mouth Disease (FMD) among the cattle and other hooved livestock across Karnataka.
The sudden FMD outbreak has occurred in 11 districts of the state; but what has emerged as a grave threat is the large-scale mobilisation of cattle to state-run 'goshalas' for want of fodder - which could easily spread the highly contagious FMD among the cattle across the state, threatening to wipe out a considerable cattle population.
In a swift move, samples were sent to the Animal Diseases Surveillance (ADS) wing of the veterinary department at Hebbal, which also confirmed the FMD outbreak. According to a copy of the report submitted to the government by the ADS wing, as many as 11 districts reported a FMD outbreak. "The disease has spread across Karnataka, especially in South Interior Karnataka. The highest incidence is seen in Chikkaballapura district in 5 out of 6 taluks followed by 4 taluks of Kolar and 3 taluks of Ramanagara and Bengaluru Rural...," the report said.
A farmer leader from Kolar attributed the outbreak to poor quality of FMD vaccines. "The FMD has been detected even in those cattle which had been previously vaccinated. We feel that there is problem in the vaccine supplied to cure/prevent FMD. We have submitted a memorandum to the KMF and animal husbandry department to conduct an inquiry into the quality of the vaccine," said the farmer leader who wished not to be named.
The animal husbandry minister A Manju has admitted that FMD has struck the state. "I was told about the spread of FMD by my officials. In fact, I have ordered the closure of 2 'goshalas' [cow shelters] in Hassan and another place after the death of livestock. Directions have been given out to screen the cattle population for FMD. As several farmers come with their livestock to goshalas, it is very difficult to keep a tab on every cattle. Yet our doctors have been working hard to check its spread. As farmers have complained about the quality of vaccines, I will ask the officials to submit a detailed report by conducting an inquiry by an experts' team," Manju said.
The minister also revealed that a proposal has been sent to the government to support farmers who have lost their cattle to diseases at 'goshalas' by paying a compensation of Rs 30 000 [USD 461.31].
"It is yet to be approved by the government. In the meantime, we will deploy a veterinarian at each goshala to check the animals and document the health status on a daily basis," Manju said. The 12th round of FMD vaccination will be taken up from [Fri 7 Apr 2017] and the state government has appealed all to get their livestock vaccinated.
Meanwhile, sources in the veterinary department said, recently, large-scale animal mobilisation was reported from the neighbouring states. "In Mysuru, Chamarajanagar and Mandya regions, farmers have brought livestock from Erode, Coimbatore districts of Tamil Nadu. In Kolar, too, cattle were brought from Andhra and Telangana regions. Perhaps this could be one of the reasons (for the outbreak)," a senior veterinarian revealed.
A senior scientist from Institute of Animal Health & Veterinary Biologicals (IAH&VB), in Hebbal, said, "Usually farmers do not get their cattle vaccinated every time. It has to be vaccinated twice in a year. But sometimes, those who have been vaccinated previously refuse to vaccinate again fearing it might affect the milk yield. But nothing of that happens to livestock."
Prompted by the newfound threat, the animal husbandry department has not only decided to compensate the death of livestock due to the disease across all its 'goshalas', but has also promised to commission a team of experts to ascertain the quality of FMD vaccines besides posting a veterinarian at each 'goshala' to monitor the health of the cattle.
[Byline: Niranjan Kaggere]
ProMED-mail from HealthMap Alerts
[The 3 FMD virus serotypes known as endemic in India are O, A and Asia1. During recent years, 2 FMD strains from the Indian subcontinent spread into the Middle East and Northern Africa (the Maghreb), causing serious losses and threatening Europe. One was FMDV serotype O, topotype ME-SA, strain Ind-2001d, which spread to Saudi Arabia, Libya, Tunisia, Algeria and Morocco; the other circulating strain was FMDV serotype A, topotype Asia, genotype (strain) VII, which reportedly spread to Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Iran and, most recent, Armenia.
In 2014, a wide-scale FMD epizootic in India spread in spite of the preventively applied vaccination; Karnataka was particularly affected. Similarly to the current event, vaccine's availability and efficacy were questioned. While the quality of vaccines is obviously of paramount importance, 2 other factors are not less significant: the rate of vaccination coverage (the percentage of vaccinated animals within the population at risk) and the matching rate of the selected vaccine strains included in the vaccines applied.
At the end of 2014 the Indian government constituted a 3-person committee to investigate the quality of the locally produced FMD vaccines. It will be interesting to note if the committee's report is publicly available (see 20141112.2949071).
In view of India's status as one of the world's 2 largest exporters of beef (the other one has been, in 2016, Brazil; each exported 19.6 percent of the world's total), its FMD situation and control levels may potentially have significant economic impact.
The results of the laboratory tests of the current strain, both its serotyping and genotyping, as well as information on the composition of the vaccines applied, are requested.
Hopefully, matching tests of the applied vaccines with the circulating strain will be applied. - Mod.AS
A HealthMap/ProMED-mail map can be accessed at: http://healthmap.org/promed/p/307.]