As India sits on its 6th day of the 21-day complete lockdown, troubles keep mounting. The latest casualty of this necessary lockdown is the poultry sector that has led farm owners in Haryana’s Bhiwani, Dadri, Rohtak, and Jind districts to take an extreme step.
As sales touched zero, many farmers were left with no other options but to bury thousands of chickens alive. This step came after the demand for chicken fell and there was a lack of bird feed.
Rajbir Singh, the owner of a poultry farm in Bhiwani, said he has buried over 12,000 birds alive in the last 10 days due to an acute shortage of feed.
“I have suffered a loss of Rs 23 lakh in last four months. Now, experts are saying that the situation is unlikely to improve till August,” he said.
“The nationwide lockdown has snapped the supply of bajra and feed. We buried them so that they do not die of starvation and further spread disease,” said Vikas Mehla, another such farmer from Bhiwani’s Mandhan. He was forced to bury 6,500 birds on Thursday.
Subhash Deswal, a feed supplier from Jind, said that chicken was
being sold in the market at Rs 2 per kg against a production cost of Rs 75 per kg of the bird.
“Prices of chicken and eggs in the market have come down drastically owing to rumours linked to coronavirus. I suffered a loss of Rs 1.5 crore as poultry farmers are staring at huge losses with the demand nosediving,” he said.
On Tuesday, PM Modi ordered a 21-day nationwide lockdown in a bid to contain the spread of the deadly COVID-19 pandemic that has infected over 1,000 people in the country. This step was deemed necessary to flatten the rising curve of the pandemic in India.