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Eat chicken with a vengence: Pawar
February 26, 2006 23:23 IST
Last Updated: February 27, 2006 17:38 IST
Decrying the media coverage of the bird flu outbreak in Maharashtra, Union Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar on Sunday asked people to eat chicken with a vengence as the poultry industry has been adversely affected by the panic created by it.
After the reportage on TV channels, "…we stopped eating chickens and eggs for no reason whatsoever. Even Parliament canteen stopped serving chicken. Railways, airlines and army followed suit," Pawar said while inaugurating an All-India Agriculture, Cattle and Dairy Development Expo in Latur.
"Let vegetarians eat vegetable or grass. Start consuming chickens with full fervour so that the backlog of the past fortnight when poultry consumption had stopped be completed", he said adding that over 20 lakh eggs were in danger of rotting if not consumed within next couple of days.
"There are reports of police and municipal officers stopping entry of poultry vehicles into urban areas. Since when has it become their duty to check poultry?" he asked.
Maharashtra Chief Minister Vilasrao Deshmukh, who was also present, asked people to start an "eat chicken campaign" to dispel the hype created by the recent bird flu scare in the state.Addressing the gathering comprising mostly farmers from various parts of the country, Pawar said the dairy business in the country was worth Rs 35,000 crore and has shown a 17 per cent annual growth.