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Anthrax Scare In Tamil Nadu State of India

Anthrax is a deadly disease that affects mainly farm animals and spread in humans// by inhaling spores from infected animals. It sometimes can prove fatal if immediate action is not taken. Now a report of Anthrax among the farm animals of the state of Tamil Nadu has renewed anxiety about this disease among the health officials.

Kerala has also imposed ban on farm animals from Tamil Nadu. The worst hit is Pollachi – a market town on the border of Kerala and Tamil Nadu that is known for cattle trading. It is one of the biggest markets where twice a week thousands of cattle are bought and sold.

Following a ban of cattle due to anthrax scare in neighboring Kerala cattle traders in Tamil Nadu feel it will lead to the collapse of the market There are also reports of anthrax in Tamil Nadu's Theni district after which the neighboring state placed a ban on cattle entry.

Said a cattle trader from Tamil Nadu: "Two weeks ago there were rumours of anthrax scare in Theni district in Tamil Nadu, there by the cows sent to Kerala via Theni were banned. Now the Kerala government has banned the entire cattle entering Kerala from all six districts from Tamil Nadu. With this the cattle traders are affected, now no buyers are coming here for trading". There are as many as 40 loads of cattle still waiting for an entry at the border. Approx. 3,000 cattle that are meant to be slaughtered in Kerala are stranded at the Pollachi cattle market.

With no government intervention the losses that have already amounted to 50 million rupees (1.15 million dollar) are likely to further rise.

"Every week I used to purchase 30 cows from this cattle market. Now I had taken almost 60 cows, because the cows sold for 14,000 rupees are now sold for 6,000 rupees. Due to the ban imposed in Kerala we are getting cattle at cheaper cost," Said a trader from Kerala.

Medindia - Further Information on Anthrax

Anthrax- is disease that effects farm animals especially of cattle and sheep, caused by the bacterium Bacillus anthracis. Anthrax can also occasionally effect human population.

Anthrax from animals- Humans can become infected with anthrax by handling products from infected animals or by breathing in anthrax spores from infected animal products (like wool, for example). People also can become infected with gastrointestinal anthrax by eating undercooked meat from infected animals.

Anthrax as a weapon- Anthrax also can be used as a weapon. This happened in the United States in 2001. Anthrax was deliberately spread through the postal system by sending letters with powder containing anthrax. This caused 22 cases of anthrax infection.

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