Amid pandemic, Selling of pork banned in Assam

Amid pandemic, Selling of pork banned in Assam

State Agriculture Minister Atul Bora on Saturday announcedthat the government has decided to ban the sale of pork meat. This decision hasbeen taken against the backdrop of over a thousand "unnatural deaths" of pigsbeing reported across the state.

More than 1,950 pigs have died across five districts ofeastern Assam of classical swine fever at a time when pig farmers have been hitby the COVID-19 lockdown.

Animal Husbandry and Veterinary Minister Atul Bora saidfive-member teams of veterinary doctors have been asked to study the causes ofthe disease that killed 1,964 pigs in less than a week and suggest remedies.

The deaths till Saturday evening have been reported fromSivasagar, Jorhat, Lakhimpur, Dhemaji, Biswanath and Nagaon districts.

The Minister also said that the cause of deaths could be some"exotic" virus, and now, to get to the bottom of the matter, samples have beensent to a top-level OIE testing laboratory in Bhopal.

Bora said that certain "restrictions" will now be imposed onpork meat that is being brought in from other states and added that people havebeen alerted.

Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal today held a meeting with the top officials and scientists of Animal Husbandry and Veterinary Department and directed the department to conduct inquiry into the swine fever cases in the state and take remedial measures at the earliest in the greater interest of farmers engaged in the piggery sector.

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