The movement of equines – horses, mules and donkeys – has been clamped in Baghpat after tests on three horses came back positive for the deadly glanders, a disease that could affect humans and other animals. The order, which was issued on Friday by the district magistrate, was on the basis of reports from the Hisar-based National Research Centre on Equines (NRCE) on nine horses – three confirmed, while the rest were suspected to be affected.
While the district administration had earlier ordered that the confirmed cases be euthanised, it has been put on hold on the request of their owners for a re-test. Subsequently, the NRCE has been asked to run fresh tests on the nine animals.
Meanwhile, the animals have been kept in isolation to prevent the spread of the disease. Their owners have been asked to ensure that only one person went in to feed them with adequate protection.
“Samples of the three animals were sent today to NRCE, while those of the suspected cases were sent yesterday for reconfirmation,” said Baghpat chief veterinary officer Rajpal Singh, adding the results were likely to be received on Monday.”On the basis of the latest NRCE report, we will take a decision over euthanasia. We too suspect the report of one of the three horses declared positive in the earlier report.”
In last six months, as many as 200 equine samples were sent to NRCE for tests, he said. When reached for comment, Baghpat District Magistrate (DM) Rishirendra Singh said the district has been declared a “control area” on the basis of the chief veterinary officer’s report.
“Entry and exit of equines have been restricted to and from other districts. To avoid spread of the disease in other animals of the district, veterinary teams have been directed to ensure these animals did not get mingle with each other,” the DM said, adding that animal fair and races have also been banned in the district.
The administration has also issued an alert to neighbouring districts requesting them to monitor and test blood samples of animals suspected to have contracted the disease.