From Our Special Correspondent
Daijiworld Media Network - Bangalore
Bangalore, Oct 7: In continuation of its fight for the cause of the farming community, the JD(S) has threatened to launch a massive Channapatna-Bangalore padayatra if the Siddaramaiah-led Congress government failed to immediately take steps for releasing compensation of Rs 25,000 each to all families, which lost their cattle due to the foot and mouth disease (FMD) by October 15.
Addressing a news conference in Bangalore on Monday, the JD(S) Opposition leader in the assembly H D Kumaraswamy announced that the party has decided to pay compensation of Rs 5,000 a family who lost their cattle due to the FMD.
He appealed to dairy farmers not to take extreme steps in the wake of the loss of their cattle following reports regarding many farmers contemplating suicides unable to bear the loss of their cattle.
The JD(S) leader urged the State Government to immediately convene a special session of the State legislature to discuss problems related to crop loss on account of drought and heavy rainfall in different parts of the State.
He said the outbreak of foot and mouth disease (FMD) has claimed 2060 head of cattle in 19 districts of the State and over 16,000 animals were affected.
Releasing the data related to the disease, he said shortage of veterinary doctors and non-availability of vaccine were major reasons for the spread of the disease.
Several families, who have been depending on the dairy income, have been severely affected as large number of cows died due to the FMD, Kumaraswamy said.
Lakshmma Prakash, resident of Nanur in Channapatna, committed suicide unable to bear the loss of cows. She had lost two cows and three sheep, the JD(S) leader said.
He said FMD claimed 664 head of cattle in Ramanagaram district, highest in the State, followed by Kolar – 512, Mandya – 325, Chikballapur – 215.
The disease has affected 16,573 head of cattle in 19 districts, he said pointing out that FMD spread in two villages of Dakshina Kannada district and infected 17 cows. However, no animal died in the coastal district, he said.
Kumaraswamy said nearly 800 veterinary doctors’ posts are remained vacant in the State.
FMD spread widely due to the shortage of vaccine. A total of 5635 vacancies, including Group D, existed in the State’s Animal Husbandry department, he said.
Karnataka ranks 11th in the milk production in the country and contributes 3.57 per cent to the State’s Gross Domestic Production, he said urging the State Government to treat the issue affecting the life and death of a large number of farmers very seriously.