BY DEBAJYOTI CHAKRABORTY
ASANSOL, 30 SEPTEMBER 2022
About a dozen cows in the Kulti and Barakar region of Burdwan West District have been detected with symptoms of lumpy skin disease, and has created a stir after the recent outbreaks in the states of Rajasthan, Punjab and Gujarat .
Since its outbreak in July nearly 100,000 cattle have been reported dead till date with the maximum numbers of animal dead reported from Rajasthan. The death toll is maximum in the past three weeks.
Dayashankar Roy, ,member of Burdwan West Animal Welfare Board have has told The Travel and Tourism Times that in the past fifteen days the lumpy skin disease, a virus in cattle, has been detected in over a dozen cows in the khatals of Kulti and Barakar, which are situated at the Bengal – Jharkhand border. A letter has already been sent to the state animal husbandry board in Kolkata seeking help.
The news of lumpy skin disease (LSD) on cows in khatals before the Durga Puja festival has created a stir. The khatal owners fear death of cows and decrease in milk productivity.
During the festive seasons, the demand for milk remains very high. Various types of sweet dishes are produced from milk during this festive season.
Not only lumps and rashes are found in the skin of the cows, but also the animals have stopped eating. In India, till the outbreak in July, so far over two million cattle are infected with this virus.
However, there is no threat to the human population as the virus is not zoonotic. But the main problem is the death of the cattle and the decrease in their milk production.
It takes many months and proper treatment to these infected animals to restore back to normal health. So far the disease has been found in cattle of khatals Kendua Bazar, Hanuman Charai and Kulti – Barakar areas.
If not checked properly, it is being feared that it will spread fast in other parts of the district.
The lumpy skin disease of Cow was first detected in Zambia. In 2019, the lumpy skin virus was found in cattles in Bangladesh and later found in West Bengal. It was suspected that the virus had entered through the porous border of India – Bangladesh and Nepal via cattle trade. Though it was controlled at that time.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi said during the World Dairy Summit on 12 September in this month that the Indian scientists have successfully indigenously developed a vaccine that will be one hundred percent effective in controlling the lumpy skin virus diseases in cattles.
He has also expressed his anxiety over the huge numbers of deaths of the cattle due to the lumpy skin disease.
India is the world’s largest milk producer and also has the world’s largest cow and buffalo head count.