Avian Flu virus found in West Bengal, culling ordered

December 16th, 2008 - 12:35 am ICT by IANS  

Kolkata, Dec 15 (IANS) Strains of the dreaded avian flu virus have been detected in Malda district of West Bengal, a state minister said Monday.”Two blood samples of dead poultry were sent to the High Security Disease Diagnostic Laboratory at Bhopal. The laboratory conducted tests and has told us that both the samples tested positive for avian flu. They will now conduct other detailed tests,” Animal Resources Development (ARD) minister Anisur Rehman told IANS.

The samples were from Narhatta and Satgheria villages under English Bazar police station in Malda district.

“We have already issued the necessary notification and ordered culling of poultry within a radius of three km from the affected district,” he said.

The samples were sent to the laboratory after around 5,000 poultry died in Narhatta village during the past one week.

Sale and consumption of poultry products have been banned in the affected area.

Rehman said there was no cause for panic, as the district authorities were taking the necessary steps to curb the problem.

Over 200,000 birds were culled when avian flu was detected in several North Bengal and South Bengal districts in January.

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