Experts have warned that with Eidul Azha is just around the corner and Congo virus might take epidemic shape in upcoming weeks as authorities have not taken precautionary measures to halt the potential threats of deadly virus.
This Eid is associated with sacrificial animals and Congo virus is also linked with the animals. In such a scenario there is dire need at the government level to launch a comprehensive awareness campaign regarding safety measures.
The process of cattle purchase for the annual sacrificial ritual cattle markets around the country attracts significant number of buyers. It is the time that livestock departments, provincial governments need to step up to the task to educate people regarding dangers of the virus and how to remain safe while the process of buying animals.
But it is a worrying sign that despite the fact that some weeks left in the Eid ul Fitar government is not up the mark to deal with the serious issue. Even reports from cattle sellers do not sound promising as many are not even aware of the disease nor are vaccination certificates being required of them, despite the sellers and cattle handlers being directly vulnerable to contracting the disease.
Livestock department needs to spray anti-tick chemical on animals, for this purpose Livestock and Animal Husbandry Department should make teams of veterinarians at some cattle markets. At least 12 people have succumbed to the virus so far in Balochistan, five have died in Sindh and two in Punjab, and more deaths cannot be ruled out. The provincial health and livestock departments need to be more proactive in combating the disease. Countrywide campaign to vaccinate all animals required in order to reduce threats of deadly virus.
The threat from the Congo virus is real and there is dire need to take safety measures.