DISEASED: Antibiotic misuse in food-producing animals and aquaculture

Anil Agarwal Media Fellowships for journalists working in India

August-September 2016

Antibiotics have long been seen as (and still are) a panacea for a variety of ailments. But their reassuring presence is all set to take a serious beating. Antibiotic resistance – cases where antibiotics fail to work against a disease – is fast becoming one of the gravest threats to public health across India and the world. And one of the reasons behind growing antibiotic resistance is the misuse of antibiotics in food-producing animals and fish.

Antibiotics are used for non-therapeutic purposes in food-producing animals (such as poultry, dairy and bees) and in aquaculture (fish, shrimp etc) to encourage growth and to prevent diseases (not to treat them). Their use across India is routine and rampant, and they are administered through feed and water. A 2014 study by Centre for Science and Environment (CSE) had highlighted the rampant misuse of antibiotics in chicken in India.

We invite journalists working in India – including freelancers – to apply for a one-month media fellowship to investigate and report on the use of antibiotics in the food-producing animal and aquaculture industry in the country. Some of the suggested areas one could focus on:

  • Use of antibiotics in intensive farms (poultry, aquaculture, dairy) -- the industry and its practices

  • Antibiotic availability – how antibiotics are openly available and unregulated

  • Waste management practices and monitoring on intensive farms

  • Roles of veterinarians, antibiotic industry and feed industry

Applicants are welcome to propose any other focus areas of their choice.

Important information 

  • This fellowship is open only to journalists working in India, writing in English or any other Indian language. Freelancers can also apply.

  • Applications should be sent in English to the undersigned through email or post. 

  • Applications should consist of a covering letter, a 200-250 word proposal, a copy of the applicant’s latest CV, a support letter from an editor (assuring that if selected, the applicant’s fellowship output will be published/telecast/broadcast by the concerned media publication etc), and links to/samples of two recently published development stories by the applicant.

  • Last date for sending completed applications: August 25, 2016

  • Fellowship period: One month – September 2016

  • Fellowship grant amount: Rs 50,000 per fellow (TDS will be deducted as per regulations from this amount)


Final fellows selected by the Jury

Amit Bhatt, Senior Correspondent
Daily News Analysis (DNA)
Jaipur, Rajasthan

Fellowship output:
Article1 | Article2 | Article3

Amrita Gupta, Freelance Journalist
Bangalore, Karnataka

Ankush Tripathi, Correspondent
Navbharat Times, Lucknow, Uttar Pradesh

Fellowship output:
Article1 | Article2 | Article3 | Article4 | Article5

Arpan Khare, City Correspondent
Dainik Jagran, Bhopal, Madhya Pradesh

Fellowship output:
Article1 | Article2 | Article3 | Article4

Bijay Mishra, Special Correspondent
“The Economic Page”,
Correspondent “DD & AIR
(Prasar Bharati)”, Correspondent 'The Pioneer'
Angul, Orissa

Fellowship output:
Article1 | Article2 | Article3 | Article4 | Article5

Charushila Kulkarni, Senior Correspondent
Loksatta, Nashik, Maharashtra

Fellowship output:
Article1 | Article2 | Article3 | Article4 | Article5 | Article6

R Samban, Bureau Chief
Deshabhimani, Malappuram, Kerela

Fellowship output:
Article1 | Article2 | Article3 | Article4

Farhana Ahmed, Correspondent
The Assam Tribune, North Lakhimpur, Assam

Fellowship output:
Article1 | Article2 | Article3