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Northeast News: African Swine Fever Hits Mizoram: Authorities Cull Over 1,300 Pigs to Prevent Spread

The African Swine Fever (ASF) so far killed at least 965 pigs in Mizoram since the outbreak of the contagious disease last month while the authorities culled 1,320 pigs to prevent the spread of the virus, an official said on Friday.

Officials in the Animal Husbandry and Veterinary (AHV) Department said that the department declared six districts -- Aizawl, Champhai, Lunglei, Saitual, Khawzawl and Serchhip -- as ASF-infested districts while the remaining five districts of the state are still considered as safe from the recurrence of the infectious disease.

AHV Department officials said that under the Prevention and Control of Infectious and Contagious Disease in Animals Act, 2009, the department has declared various villages and localities in these six districts as infected areas following the outbreak of ASF in April.

The department has also barred the supply of pigs and pork from the infected zones.

"Our surveillance teams have been culling the pigs with lime powder in the designated areas and we are also requesting the villagers to follow the same procedure," an official of the AHV department said.

Animal Husbandry and Veterinary Minister C. Lalsawivunga recently held a review meeting with the concerned officials and appealed to all to adhere to the government's guidelines and directives to deal with the disease.

Mizoram was first hit by the ASF in 2021 and since then, reports of the outbreak of the disease have been reported almost every year during summers.

According to officials, the outbreak of ASF mostly occurs when the climate begins to warm up and pre-monsoon rains commence in the state.

Between 2021 and 2023, over 47,270 pigs and piglets have died in Mizoram due to the ASF outbreak, while at least 25,182 pigs have been culled during that period.

The government has so far provided compensation to 2,488 families for loss of pigs due to the disease and the state government has approached the centre for payment of compensation to additional families amounting to Rs 311.66 lakh.

According to experts, the outbreak of ASF may have been caused by pigs or pork brought from neighbouring Myanmar, Bangladesh, and the adjoining states of the northeast.

Pork is one of the most common and popular meats consumed by both the tribals and non-tribals in the northeastern region.

With heavy demand for pork in the northeastern region, its annual business in the region is worth around Rs 8,000-Rs 10,000 crore, with Assam being the largest supplier.

*Except for the heading, this story has not been edited by The enewstime.in and has been published from IANS feed.

(Northeast, Northeast News)

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