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ICAR-Indian Veterinary Research Institute (IVRI), Eastern Regional Station (ERS), Kolkata in collaboration with Bharat Sevashram Sangha organized an ‘Animal Health Awareness Programme’ at Bharat Sevashram Sangha, Daria village of South 24 Paraganas district on 8 th January, 2024. The programme was planned under Development Action Plan for Scheduled Castes (DAPSC) scheme for the year 2023-24. Seventy (n=70) women belonging to scheduled caste community mostly of Poundra, (n=57) and Kaora (n=13) sub-castes had joined in the program from Shibnagar (n=36), Gobramari (n=28), Daria (n=5) and Thakurani Beria (n=1) villages. Dr. S. Bag and Dr. G. K. Das, Principal Scientists from ICAR-IVRIERS, Kolkata and Sri Sujit Mondal , Secretary, Bharat Sewashram Sangha, were present in the occasion. In the beginning, the documents (like Aadhar Card, Voter ID, Caste Certificate and Food security card) of all the beneficiaries were verified which was followed by distribution of awareness kits. Each awareness kit was comprised of scientific literature on poultry/duck /turkey /quail farming, vaccination and de-worming schedule as well as poultry and duck diseases, pen, masks customized writing pad, plastic folder, head cap and large non woven carrying bag.

In the beginning of the program, Dr Das told about the various developmental activities of ICAR-IVRI implemented for socially weaker sections of the rural community, including DAPSC scheme, about the objectives of the DAPSC scheme in general, the programmes already conducted in the Canning I block, the purpose of the day’s program as well as upcoming programmes. Dr. Das also explained briefly about the scopes of women empowerment by cash earning through animal husbandry and poultry rearing practices. Dr S. Bag, in his lecture narrated a brief history of ICAR-IVRI since its inception as Imperial Bacteriological Laboratory, Pune, followed by Mukteswar, Kumaon Hills to Izatnagar Bareilly and the contribution of ICAR-IVRI in development and production of veterinary biological, diagnostics and vaccines related to livestock and poultry. Dr Bag also explained about the general animal husbandry practices and especially highlighted about the role of stress on livestock in general and poultry in particular. He also suggested the various ways to improve the productivity by reducing the stressful conditions to the birds. Further, Dr Bag emphasized the brooding procedure of day  old chicks, poultry housing, importance of farm hygiene as well as overall management of poultry and especially thKaveri/RIR/Banaraja birds which would be distributed to the women beneficiaries. Sri Sujit Mondal, described about various social activities of Bharat Sevashram Sangha conducting for rural development. He also highlighted the role of women in agriculture and animal husbandry as well as changing the family income and rural economy of a village. He also emphasized the importance critical care of younger chicks during brooding on survivability rate.

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