One week delay by West Bengal on bird flu intimation: Centre

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New Delhi, Jan 24 (UNI) There was a week's delay by West Bengal in intimating the Centre about the outbreak of bird flu which prevented the timely launch of the joint culling operations, Information and Broadcasting Minister Priya Ranjan Dasmunsi said today.

Mr Dasmunsi was talking to reporters after Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar had briefed the weekly Cabinet meeting on the bird flu situation in West Bengal and Maharashtra.

While bird flu cases were first reported on January 4, the Left Front government intimated the Centre on January 11, he said.

Nevertheless, the state and the central governments had since then taken up several positive steps to contain the epidemic and prevent its spread to newer areas, he said.

The Centre had provided all the assistance sought by West Bengal and was ready to meet further requirements, Mr Dasmunsi said.

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh had directed the I and B Ministry to disseminate knowledge of the problem, particularly through All India Radio, he said.

The scale of the problem was different between West Bengal and Maharashtra, the Minister said.


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