Samples show no bird flu in J&K; authorities still alert

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Srinagar, Jan 20 (UNI) Asking people not to panic, authorities in Jammu and Kashmir said more than 300 samples taken for determining the presence of bird flu tested negative.

Though no case of bird flu was reported from any part of the state, the authorities have taken all measures to prevent transportation of any such virus into the state, official sources said.

A senior officer of Animal Husbandry department said the government has set up a check-post at Lakhanpore where doctors and other staff members of the department were posted to check poultry birds before allowing them entry in the state.

Similarly, another check post has been set up at Qazigund where similar checks are being conducted before allowing any truck carrying the birds to enter the valley, he said.

We have made all arrangements to prevent the virus from entering the state, he said.

About the outbreak of bird flu in West Bengal, the officer said, the state is very far away from here. Though it spreads through air also, but there was no report about bird flu in the states which are very close to West Bengal, he added.

He said people should not panic as our local and imported birds are safe.

The officer informed that more than 300 samples were collected and all of them tested negative.

About the chances of bird flu virus entering the state through migratory birds, he said, the department had also conducted tests of migratory birds which too was negative.

He said the department was keeping constant check over migratory birds and there was no reason to panic. He, however, added that the poultry being imported from other states was healthy and free from any disease.

However, he added that the Department has decided to impose ban on the movement of poultry during night.

The state health department, meanwhile, has directed all Chief Medical Officers in the state to be prepared for any eventuality.

Though there was no report of bird flu, the health department has directed all rapid response teams to be ready in case of any contingency, they said.

However, the health department has decided to launch an information campaign to inform the people about the dos and dont's in case of an outbreak of the disease.

UNI BAS AKJ MIR KP1333

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