Govt on toes after 50 pigs die in SWKH

Cause of deaths remains a mystery

MAWKYRWAT/JOWAI: The government is on its toes to unearth the cause of the pig deaths following reports of at least 50 more pigs dying last week in Umpung and Shnong Dong Ktieh under Ranikor Civil Sub-Division in South West Khasi Hills.
Stating that the death of the pigs happened between a period of about two weeks, District Animal Husbandry & Veterinary Officer, Dr WN War, said that on August 7 and 10, the rapid response team along with the team from the Sub-Divisional Officer (Civil), Ranikor, conducted an inspection and surveillance and samples have been collected and dispatched to the laboratory in Shillong.
Speaking to The Shillong Times, the SDO of Ranikor Civil Sub-Division, HS Diengdoh, informed that he had prohibited the sale and supply of pigs from the area for rearing or human consumption owing to no knowledge about the cause of the pig deaths.
Further, in a public notice, Dr War said, “Piggery farmers are to strictly cooperate with the village authorities and immediately inform the Rangbah Shnong or Myntri Shnong about any death of pigs so that the nearest veterinary centre can be intimated about the same”.
The officer also reminded the people that no pigs are allowed to be brought into the district from outside either for rearing and selling or for consumption.
Pig transport ban
Meanwhile, in view of the death of pigs in Lamin, Muktapur, Shnongpdeng and Nongtalang village in West Jaintia Hills, the Deputy Commissioner has banned the transportation of pigs from the affected villages to other places in and outside the district.
The DC, in an order, also stated that interstate and inter-district transportation is not allowed until further orders.
With the number of pig deaths reported from the villages under Amlarem Sub-division being large, the cause behind the phenomena is yet to be ascertained, however, there are speculations that it might be African Swine Flu (ASF).
In this regard, the DC said that the concerned department will hold a series of awareness programme on disinfecting the equipments including sheds and burial of the pigs as per protocol.

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