Bird flu scare in West Bengal

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{image-bird flu_14012008.jpg}Birbhum, Jan 14: At least 10,000 chickens, feared to be afflicted with the Avian Influenza virus, have died during the last ten days at Margram village in this district, Birbhum District Magistrate (DM) Tapan Kumar Som said here today.

The blood samples had been sent to Bhopal for advanced tests but no confirmation had yet been received about the chickens being afflicted with bird flu, Mr Som said. However, Birbhum Chief Medical Officer (CMO) Sunil Bhowmick said the district administration was taking adequate precautions and the sale of poultry had been banned in the village.

Besides, various NGOs and self-help groups were instructed to organise door-to-door campaigns throughout the village to spread awareness among the people about the precautionary measures.

Disinfectants were also being sprayed at strategic locations. The DM added that a special team, comprising two medical officers, would be arriving from New Delhi here today to inspect the site.

''If the incidence of the Avian Influenza virus was confirmed, all chickens, within ten km radius of the Margram village, will be culled,'' the CMO added.
Besides, as a precautionary measure, imposing a ban on the sale of poultry at the Rampurhat subdivision of the district was also being considered, the CMO added.


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