‘India needs more veterinary care centres’

Tarun Shridhar, former Secretary of Animal Husbandry, Government of India, presents degree to a student during the Graduation Day ceremony held at the Rajiv Gandhi Institute of Veterinary Education and Research.   | Photo Credit: Special Arrangement

The exponential increase in livestock population in the country has far outstripped the number of centres offering veterinary care, Tarun Shridhar, former Secretary, Ministry of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry and Dairying, Government of India, has said.

In his address at the Graduation Day hosted by the Rajiv Gandhi Institute of Veterinary Education and Research (RIVER), Mr. Shridhar pointed out that the latest livestock census revealed that the population was trending toward the human population in India.

However, compared to a network of 1.9 lakh health institutions in the government sector, there were only 65,000 veterinary institutions across India. “This needs to improve fast to address the ‘One Health’ concept,” he said.

The chief guest, who awarded the certificates to the graduates, also highlighted the gaining importance of veterinary service, fundamental to the human health under ‘One Health’ concept.

Suresh S. Honnappagol, former Animal Husbandry Commissioner, and former Vice-Chancellor, Karnataka Veterinary, Animal & Fisheries Sciences University, stressed the important role of veterinarians in providing safe animal food to the ever increasing population.

Vets also performed a crucial role in applying their skills to take care of the wide range of animals like the livestock, companion animals and wildlife, essential for the sustenance of the present-day world, he added. A. Anbarasu, Development Commissioner, underscored the fundamental duties of veterinarian as a citizen.

Two trends

RIVER Dean, S. Ramkumar, who presented a report, observed that there were two distinct trends emerging in veterinary education: increase in proportion of students opting for veterinary science as their top preference in ranked choices and the rise in number of enrolment of girls. He pointed out that of the total students in veterinary science 55% are girls. Also, approximately 60% had chosen veterinary sciences as the first choice, a significant increase compared to two decades ago.

The Dean administered the veterinarian’s oath to graduates. According to a press note from RIVER, the 21st batch, which graduated in the silver jubilee year of the institution, comprised 52 students, including 30 girls, who graduated in B.V.Sc and AH disciplines. The graduates hailed from different States such as Uttar Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh, Nagaland, Rajasthan and (Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Telegana, Goa,) in addition to the UTs of Puducherry, Jammu and Kashmir.

For the first time students could get experience in different places during their internship programme of six months. This included Mysuru Zoo and Race Club, Frozen Bull Semen Station at Bengaluru, Indo-Swiss Project and Hi Tech Dairy, Munnar, and Modernised Commercial Poultry Farm at Namakkal. The purpose was to build the capacity of the passing-out graduates to meet the challenges in the livestock sector.

Two students, Kaavya Sudhakar and Josikka Navukkarasu, underwent specialised veterinary clinical training at Purdue University, U.S., as part of the students exchange programme initiated by RIVER. The function was attended by the large number of parents, faculty members, officials from Animal Husbandry department, and Bank. The top two students Dr. Kaavya and Dr. Josika were awarded with medals for securing highest OGP.

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Printable version | Dec 4, 2021 9:07:39 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/puducherry/india-needs-more-veterinary-care-centres/article29859705.ece

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