While there are three crore poultry birds in Odisha and every year the State is facing Avian Influenza (AI), setting up a Regional Disease Diagnostic Laboratory (RDDL) at Bhubaneswar is highly essential.
Justifying the case, the Odisha Government has requested the Union Ministry of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry and Dairying to set up an RDDL at Bhubaneswar for Avian Influenza (AI) Testing having BSL III Laboratory. Since 2011-12, the State has faced 15 Avian Influenza outbreaks and lakhs of poultry birds have been culled.
While there are nearly 3 crore poultry birds, every year over 15lakhs of migratory birds are visiting the State during winter months to Chilka Lake, Bhitarkanika and Hirakud Reservoir.These migratory birds are the potential source of Avian Influenza, experts said.
And every year Odisha is sending lakhs of samples of poultry and avian samples in case of poultry mortality as well as routine surveillance to Regional Disease DiagnosticL aboratory, Kolkata and National Institute of High Security Animal Disease (NIHSAD) Bhopal for screening.
Testing at RDDL Kolkata and NIHSAD Bhopal is a time consuming process and more over these laboratories are facing difficulties in providing results as number of samples are increasing day by day, while capacities are limited.
Prompt and timely diagnosis of disease is of supreme importance for early control and containment of the spread of virus to safeguard livelihoods of poultry farmers and other stakeholders.
While there are five RDDLs in the country, Odisha requires one RDDL, given its poultry population and repeated outbreak of Avian Influenza cases.
Most importantly there are sufficient number of qualified manpower available in Odisha, who are testing Avian Influenza by using AI Virus antigen Rapid Detection Kits.