Imphal, May 1 : Health authorities in Manipur held a three-day seminar and training on methods to check outbreak of bird flu in the state in the wake of the disease resurfacing in neighbouring Tripura.
The seminar, held in Imphal, was aimed at imparting knowledge and basic know-how to veterinarians and health officials to deal with a sudden outbreak of the disease in the state.
Manipur had to grapple with the outbreak of the deadly H5N1 strain of influenza in chickens in 2007, following which nearly 300,000 fowl were culled in the state.
"In 2007, we had faced tremendous pressure for fighting bird flu. Now again, we are preparing for fighting in the event of any occurrence of bird flu in Manipur," said Dorendra Singh, Director, veterinary and animal husbandry department.
The veterinarians who underwent training at the workshop felt it was an effective way to educate people about the disease.
"If we have such types of seminar or workshop, people will be more aware. So that in future, when there is any outbreak, there will be a helping hand from the people," said Romita, a veterinary student.
Over 25,000 chicken and ducks have already been slaughtered in Tripura this month after eight villages were hit by the H5N1 strain.
In India, the virus resurfaced in West Bengal in January this year, forcing authorities to cull more than four million birds.
The World Health Organization described the January outbreak in West Bengal as the worst ever in India.
While no human cases have been reported in India, experts fear the H5N1 virus might mutate or combine with the highly contagious seasonal influenza virus and spark a pandemic that could kill millions of people.
Since the virus resurfaced in Asia in late 2003, at least 240 people have died from bird flu in a dozen countries, the WHO says.