AIZAWL: The African Swine Fever (ASF) has claimed the lives of over 25,000 pigs in five months since late March in Mizoram, causing a loss of more than Rs 121 crore, a senior official of the state animal husbandry and veterinary science department said on Sunday.
Altogether 9,458 pigs have been culled so far to prevent the viral disease from spreading further.
"At least 239 villages or areas across 11 districts are currently affected by the ASF outbreak causing a monetary loss to the tune of Rs 121.49 crore," Joint Director (Livestock Health) of the department, Dr Lalhmingthanga, said.
With 130 pigs succumbing to the disease on Sunday, the number of fatalities has reached 25,256 and the loss incurred thus is Rs 88.39 crore, he said.
The cost of culled pigs is Rs 33.10 crore, the official said.
However, the total loss would be higher as this is just an approximate value and over 1,000 pigs also died of the disease outside the 239 villages.
Of the 11 districts of Mizoram, Aizawl is the worst-affected registering at least 10,766 pig deaths, followed by Lunglei at 4,129 and Serchhip at 3,490, Lalhmingthanga said.
The ASF outbreak is believed to be caused by pigs or pork imported from Myanmar, Bangladesh and neighbouring states like Meghalaya.
Experts said ASF is not a threat to human health and cannot be transmitted from pigs to humans.
The first outbreak of suspected ASF was reported at Lungsen village in south Mizoram's Lunglei district near the Bangladesh border on March 21.
Later in mid-April, the National Institute of High-Security Animal Diseases in Bhopal confirmed that the pig deaths were due to ASF.