Congress leader's 'lumpy virus-cheetahs’ comment draws response from Fadnavis

Updated on Oct 04, 2022 08:12 AM IST

In his comment, Maharashtra Congress chief Nana Patole drew links between lumpy virus and cheetahs brought from Namibia.

Maharashtra deputy chief minister Devendra Fadnavis. (HT File Photo)
Maharashtra deputy chief minister Devendra Fadnavis. (HT File Photo)
By | Edited by Swati Bhasin, New Delhi

A Maharashtra Congress leader’s comment linking the fast-spreading lumpy virus among cattle to cheetahs brought from Namibia last month has prompted a sharp response from deputy chief minister Devendra Fadnavis. Nana Patole, the Maharashtra Congress chief, on Monday drew an unexpected link between cheetahs, Nigeria and the virus, which is said to have spread to nearly 15 states.

“Lumpy virus… There is a country called Nigeria. This virus has been there for many years. This cheetah has been brought. It has been brought from there,” Nana Patole was heard saying in a video tweeted by news agency ANI.

He was referring to the big cats who were brought from Namibia in Africa last month to Madhya Pradesh’s Kuno National Park. Prime Minister Narendra Modi had released the eight cheetahs in the national park, and this marked the return of the big cats to the country after nearly seven decades.

It was not clear, however, what Patole meant when he said that but he seemed to blame the central government for the spread. He also did not explain further on links with the lumpy virus, which has affected thousands of cattle and has sparked serious concerns across the country.

Hours later, Devendra Fadnavis took a sharp swipe at Patole.

“Nana Patole does not even know where the cheetahs were brought from,” the BJP leader was quoted as saying by ANI.

“He has a hobby of talking without knowledge, as he knows that it will run in the media. Otherwise, he won't be seen altogether,” he added.

(With inputs from ANI)

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