KANPUR: To rule out the infection of any zoonotic disease including leptospirosis in zoo staff, the blood samples of all the employees are being collected for pathological test these days. This is for the first time that a medical test is being conducted for the zoo staff on such a large scale. The drive was started following the threat from leptospirosis as it is a zoonotic disease and is highly communicable.
The drive kickstarted after it was detected that the lioness Lakshmi was suffering from the disease leptospirosis caused by the bacteria leptospira. Though, earlier it had been planned to conduct pathological examinations and complete medical checkup of the entire zoo staff including zoo officials and veterinarians but the lioness' ailment added to the seriousness of the issue.
Every day a group of eight zoo employees are sent to a renowned diagnostic centre where their blood samples are taken. Pathological test will be conducted on as many as 92 staff members and a sum of Rs 5.5 lakhs [US$8,788] will be incurred in carrying out all the tests. The funds for this purpose have been roped in from the Kanpur Prani Udayan Evam Vikas Society.
Talking to TOI, Kanpur zoo director, Kuruvilla Thomas said the approval for conducting medical test for entire zoo staff was sought from the Kanpur Prani Udayan Evam Vikas Society. A sum of Rs 6,000 [US$95] per person would be incurred on these tests, he added.