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Freedom from Rinderpest for Pakistan




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    Freedom_from_Rinderpest_for_Pakistan_1Rinderpest (locally known as Mata) is an acute, highly contagious and fatal viral disease of bovines. For centuries, it remained the most dreaded bovine plague and was the cause of death of countless cattle and buffaloes. The disease is characterized by fever, inappetance, oculo-nasal discharges, excessive salivation, mouth lesions, diarrhoea and death.

     

    Freedom_from_Rinderpest_for_Pakistan_1

    Rinderpest (locally known as Mata) is an acute, highly contagious and fatal viral disease of bovines. For centuries, it remained the most dreaded bovine plague and was the cause of death of countless cattle and buffaloes. The disease is characterized by fever, inappetance, oculo-nasal discharges, excessive salivation, mouth lesions, diarrhoea and death. Rinderpest had been prevalent in Pakistan since its creation in 1947. Frequent outbreaks of the disease played havoc with the livestock population mainly at dairy colonies around Karachi where it remained endemic. Occasionally, it also caused huge losses in other parts of the country. A classical outbreak of rinderpest occurred in Northern Areas of country in April 1994 killing about 40000 animals. This outbreak spread over to Afghanistan in 1995-96.  Animal Health Program, NARC contributed significantly for the diagnosis and eradication of this disease not only in Pakistan, but also in the neighboring country Afghanistan. This laboratory was designated as FAO referral laboratory and provided all technical assistance for the laboratory confirmation, surveillance and sero-monitoring of the disease as well as guidance to implement suitable measures for its eradication in Pakistan.

    Last case of rinderpest was diagnosed in Karachi by NARC in September 2000.Freedom_from_Rinderpest_for_Pakistan_2 In November 2000, vaccination against rinderpest was officially prohibited in Pakistan. Pakistan declared provisionally free from rinderpest on 30th January 2003 – a mile stone in the history of the country.  FAO has announced a dead line of 2010 for the eradication of this disease from the world. At present, Pakistan is progressing well towards this goal and is expected to get freedom from disease and infection by OIE during 2007.


    Key References

    Hussain, M., E. U. Haq and K. Naeem. (1998). Investigation of a rinderpest outbreak in buffaloes in Pakistan. Veterinary Record, 143, 145.

    Rossiter, P.B., M. Hussain, R. H. Raja, W. Moghul, Z. Khan and D. W. Broadbent. (1998). Cattle plague in Shangri-La: Observations on a severe outbreak of rinderpest in northern Pakistan 1994-95. Veterinary Record 143: 39-42.

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