Pashu Sandesh, 01 June 2019
Modi Government has started its second term since yesterday. In a marathon first meeting of the Cabinet Ministers, some important decisions were taken which has the potential for the long term impact.
While realising the contribution of Animal Husbandry in the Indian Economy, the Modi Government has decided to fully bear the expenditure on Foot and Mouth Disease (FMD) vaccination. Earlier the expenditure on FMD vaccination was shared by Central Government and State Government in the ratio of 60:40 respectively. An estimated 13000 crore rupees would be the burden on the Central Government coffers.
FMD since long has plagued the Animal Husbandry sector of our country and a regular vaccination program is run in cycles for the eradication of the disease. But the questionable quality of the vaccine and the sloppy implementation of the vaccination schedules often through the already overburdened Veterinary officers has resulted in the FMD outbreaks especially in the Northern part of the country.
India is trying hard to achieve the FMD free status which some of its counterparts such as Brazil have already achieved. India is trying to achieve the FMD free status by 2030. Central Government has already proposed Andhra Pradesh & Telangana as one zone and Maharashtra as another for recognition as FMD Disease Free Zones by OIE.
FMD directly affect the productivity of the Animals. Government is committed towards its dream of doubling the Farmers income by 2022 and the role of Animal Husbandry towards achieving this dream is for everyone to see. FMD also affect the meat export market as overseas buyers prefer meat from the disease-free country. India is one of the largest exporters of Meat and the FMD free tag would certainly give it an edge in the competition.
Central Government while providing the expenditure now can monitor the vaccination process throughout the country. On the other hand, financially less stressed States could pert the resources for better management and implementation of various programs for the up gradation of Animal Husbandry in their respective states.