On Monday, the central government of India announced that veterinary services for animals should be treated as essential services. These services should not be suspended during the COVID-19 lockdowns across the country.
In a letter addressed to all the chief secretaries, the Centre stated that veterinary hospitals and clinics in the state which includes private clinics, pathology labs, animal shelters should function as per schedule.
The join secretary of Ministry of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry and Dairying, Upamanyu Basu said that continuous operations of emergency services in the animal husbandry and veterinary sector are of utmost importance including emergent animal health issues.
The government has urged veterinarians and related officials to follow personal hygiene and avoid mass gathering.
Another letter by the Animal Welfare Board of India (AWBI) that stated all the law enforcement agencies should ensure that animals and birds do not suffer starvation during the lockdown in the country and respective states.
If food supply stops, it may cause a large number of animals and bird may die due to starvation and their carcasses may further lead to the spread of uncontrollable diseases.
BJP MP Maneka Gandhi further stated that animals and birds should not be allowed to starve in the country in this manner.