Shut pig farms to prevent Nipah epidemic: PETA to Kerala govt

The World Organization for Animal Health warns, Nipah virus is highly contagious in pigs and has devastating zoonotic potential, meaning that it can infect humans from other animals, PETA India noted
Family members of the patients admitted at the Kozhikode Medical College
Family members of the patients admitted at the Kozhikode Medical College

Thiruvananthapuram

The death of a 12-year-old child in Kerala from Nipah virus,has prompted People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) India to urgeKerala's minister for animal husbandry and dairy development, J. Chinchrani, toclose down pig farms in the state to prevent further spread of the infectionand a potential epidemic.

PETA India's request to Kerala on Tuesday, comes within twomonths of the group installing a warning billboard in Delhi about the meatindustry's link to the spread of bird flu. In Delhi, an 11-year-old boy hadsuccumbed to complications from H5N1 bird flu, an infection with a 60 per centmortality rate, in July.

"The crowded animal farms of the meat industry createhotspots for zoonotic diseases. These killer facilities need to be shut downimmediately and permanently, before they cost more lives," said PETA IndiaVegan Foods and Nutrition Specialist Dr Kiran Ahuja.

The World Organization for Animal Health warns, Nipah virusis highly contagious in pigs and has devastating zoonotic potential, meaningthat it can infect humans from other animals, PETA India noted.

Numerous zoonotic diseases, including the Nipah virus, whichhas an estimated fatality rate of 40 per cent to 75 per cent in humans, provethat crowding animals together for rearing or slaughter allows diseases tospread among them and to humans easily." PETA India's letter to theminister states while urging the Kerala government to shut down pig farms topreempt a potential pandemic.

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