CM directs to complete culling by Saturday

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Kolkata, Jan 31 (UNI) West Bengal Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee today directed the district authorities to complete culling by Saturday next and keep a strict vigil against recurrence of the disease.

Mr Bhattacharjee, who reviewed the situation in a video conference with the authorities of the 13 bird flu-hit districts, asked them to ensure that culling of altogether 2.8 million birds was complete in the next two days.

" An instruction has also been issued to maintain strict vigil against fresh outbreak of the disease for ten days after the culling operation is over, " Animal Resources Development Minister Anisur Rahman told reporters.

He said a state of readiness was prevailing throughout the state against any unusual death of birds.

So far 2.5 million birds had been culled by 1,000 teams of health workers and the operation was over in most of the affected districts, Mr Rahaman said.

Assuring that no human being had so far been infected by the H5N1 virus, Health Minister Surjyakanta Mishra said a door-to-door surveillance was on in the affected areas as a preventive measure.

" Those engaged in culling would be quarrantined for ten days after the operation as a precautionary measure against infection of the H5N1 virus in human body. They will also been given medicines, " he said.

The disease broke out in altogether 45 blocks in 13 out of the state's 19 districts, including North Twentyfour Parganas, Howrah and Hooghly, close to Kolkata setting an alarm ringing in the city where the authorities imposed a ban on supply of poultry products from all the farms, except those considered to be safe.


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