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Bird flu threat hits Mizoram poultry market

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Aizawl, Feb 23 (UNI) Mizoram poultry market has been hit by the avian influenza scare with sale of chickens and eggs declining drastically over the past few days.

Import of poultry products from neighbouring Assam came to a complete halt today, two days after the ban came into effect.

''Following the import ban, a large number of poultry products were pushed back yesterday and today,'' Vairengte police check gate sources said.

Several meat shop owners across the city said their sales had been badly affected by the bird flu scare.

Animal Husbandry and Veterinary department (AHV) was making sure that government run poultry farms were not affected with the H5N1 strain.

The officials urged the people through the media not to panic as the chances of Mizoram being infected with the virus through migratory birds were remote as the state did not have large water bodies, which mainly attract the migratory birds.

''On our part, we are taking every possible step to prevent an outbreak of bird flu in the state by banning imports of birds and eggs,'' AHV Director C.Sangnghina said.

UNI SNR SG YA SP1316

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