The Centre has confirmed bird flu or avian influenza in 7 Indian states including Kerala, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh, Haryana, Gujarat and Uttar Pradesh.

After confirmation of the avian influenza-positive samples from ICAR-NIHSAD in poultry (two poultry farms) of Panchkula district in Haryana positive cases of avian influenza in migratory birds were reported in several other places.

These avian influenza affected areas are Shivpuri, Rajgarh, Shajapur, Agar, Vidisha district of Madhya Pradesh; Zoological Park, Kanpur in Uttar Pradesh and Pratapgarh and Dausa districts of Rajasthan.

Also read: Assam bans poultry imports due to outbreak of Avian Influenza

The other states where the disease has been confirmed are Kerala, Himachal Pradesh and Gujarat.

The Union ministry of fisheries, animal husbandry & dairying issued advisory to the affected states so as to avoid further spread of disease.

Reports of unusual mortality of birds have been received from state of Chhattisgarh in the night of January 8, 2021 and morning of January 9, 2021 in poultry and wild birds in Balod district.

“The state has constituted RRT teams for emergency situation and also sent the samples to designated laboratory,” the ministry said.

Also read: Indian government asks states to step up vigilance against bird flu

Further, reports of unusual mortality in ducks have also been received from Sanjay lake, Delhi.

Samples have been sent to the designated laboratory for testing. Samples of dead crows have also been sent to NIHSAD from Mumbai, Thane, Dapoli, Parbhani and Beed districts of Maharashtra for confirmation of AI.

Meanwhile, culling operations have been completed in both the affected districts of Kerala andPost Operational Surveillance Programme guidelines have been issued to Kerala.

Central teams deployed to visit the affected states of Kerala, Haryana and Himachal Pradesh for monitoring and for epidemiological investigation reached Kerala.

In a communication to the chief secretaries /administrators of the states/UTs, secretary DAHD requested state animal husbandry departments to ensure effective communication and coordination with health authorities for close vigilance of the disease status and avoid any chances of jumping of the disease into humans.

Besides increasing surveillance around water bodies, live bird markets, zoos, poultry farms, etc. proper disposal of carcass, and strengthening of bio-security in poultry farms have to be ensured.

State governments’ were also requested to be prepared for any eventuality of avian influenza and were requested to ensure sufficient stock of PPE kits and accessories required for culling operations.

Chief secretaries /administrators of the states/UTs were requested to arrange to issue appropriate advisories to quell consumer reactions, affected by rumours and increase awareness regarding safety of poultry or poultry products that are safe for consumption following boiling/ cooking procedures.

Meanwhile, the Assam government has temporarily banned the import of poultry from the western states after the outbreak of bird flu reported in various parts of the country.

The state government in a notification issued on Saturday said the highly pathogenic avian influenza is a highly contagious avian disease having zoonotic potential of causing a huge loss in terms of mortality and trade of poultry.

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