Mumbai/ New Delhi:
Delhi and Maharashtra have confirmed bird flu amid nationwide efforts to contain the spread. Seven other states – Uttar Pradesh, Kerala, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh, Haryana and Gujarat – had earlier confirmed Avian Influenza as the cause of the recent bird deaths.
Parliamentary Standing Committee on Agriculture has summoned senior officials of the Ministry of Animal Husbandry to examine the availability of animal vaccines in the country; the meeting will take place at 3 pm.
Delhi has banned import of live birds and the biggest wholesale poultry market in Ghazipur has been temporarily shut down.
In Maharashtra, Parbhani – about 500 km from state capital Mumbai – is the epicenter. “About 800 poultry birds – all hens – died in the last two days. Their samples were given for testing. And now it is confirmed that the reason is bird flu,” Deepak Madhukar Muglikar, District Collector, told NDTV.
“It has been confirmed in Murumba village. There are about eight poultry farms and 8,000 birds. We have give orders of culling those poultry birds,” he added. Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray will hold a meeting this evening to review the bird flu situation.
Chhattisgarh is also on alert.
Last week, the government clarified that the disease is “zoonotic” but infection in humans has not been reported in India, according to the government.
India reported the first outbreak of Avian Influenza in 2006. Bird flu viruses have been circulating worldwide for centuries with four known major outbreaks recorded in the last century, the centre said in a statement.