Over 5,000 birds culled after fresh flu in Tripura

April 24th, 2008 - 10:03 pm ICT by admin  

Agartala, April 24 (IANS) More than 5,000 poultry birds were culled in west Tripura Thursday as a fresh outbreak of bird flu was reported in the northeastern state. Ashish Roy Burman, director of the Animal Resource Development (ARD) department, said the samples of the dead poultry from Bishalgarh district in west Tripura that had been sent last week to the High Security Animal Diseases Laboratory (HSADL) in Bhopal, had tested positive.

“We would start culling at Bishalgarh from Saturday,” Burman told IANS.

Bishalgarh, 30 km from the capital city Agartala, is the third place in Tripura where the avian influenza virus attacked poultry birds.

The flu resurfaced in western Tripura Tuesday, a week after culling operations were completed in bordering villages of Dhalai district.

Culling operations started Thursday morning at Mohanpur village, 30 km west of Agartala, said Burman.

He said that 20 Rapid Response Teams (RRT) headed by senior ARD department experts, were engaged to slaughter over 65,000 birds during the next five days in Mohanpur and adjoining eight other villages. The mass culling would be carried out within a radius of 10 km of the affected villages.

Tripura Chief Minister Manik Sarkar Thursday held meetings with top officials of ARD and other departments and asked them to make all out efforts to prevent the spread of the avian influenza virus.

Principal Secretary in charge of ARD department U. Venkateswarlu also held separate meetings with police and Border Security Force (BSF) officials on ways to check illegal trade of birds and poultry products.

“We have asked BSF to maintain a strict vigil along the Indo-Bangladesh border with Tripura to prevent illegal trade of poultry and poultry products from Bangladesh,” Venkateswarlu told IANS.

Fifteen of Tripura’s 17 sub-divisions fall along the 856-km international border with Bangladesh.

Over 41,000 poultry birds have been slaughtered and thousands of poultry products destroyed following an outbreak of bird flu earlier this month in the border villages of Kamalpur under Dhalai district.

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