September 21, 2011


India confirms bird flu in West Bengal



Indian government confirmed the discovery of bird flu in two villages of Tehatta I block in Nadia District of West Bengal after collecting poultry samples from those areas. 


Samples forwarded to the ERDDL, Kolkata and High Security Animal Disease Laboratory (HSADL), Bhopal have tested positive for H5 strain of Avian Influenza.


It has been decided to immediately commence the culling of birds and destruction of eggs and feed material to control further spread of the disease.


It has also been decided that the entire poultry will be culled within a radius of three-kilometre of the foci of infection. In addition to the culling strategy, surveillance will be carried out over a further radius up to 10 kilometres.


Surveillance is also being intensified throughout the state to monitor further spread of infection while a daily report on the control and containment operations will be furnished by the West Bengal Government to the Department of Animal Husbandry, Dairying and Fisheries in the Ministry of Agriculture.


The Centre has advised a series of strategic actions to be taken immediately in the area by the Animal Husbandry and Public Health Departments. These include declaration of infected and surveillance areas, ban on movement of poultry and its products in the infected area/closure of poultry and egg markets and shops within a radius of 10km from the infected site, ban on movement of farm personnel, restricting access to wild and stray birds, restricting access to the infected premises, destruction of birds, disposal of dead birds and infected materials; clean-up and disinfection followed by sealing of the premises and issue of sanitisation certificate, post operations surveillance, imposition of legislative measures etc. along with necessary measures laid down in the Contingency Plan (2005) of the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India.


With regards to the compensation for loss of poultry on account of culling and destruction of birds, the rate for payment of compensation has been indicated to the State Governments. The Government of India has conveyed the decision to share costs of compensation on 50:50 basis with the State Governments and authorised State Governments to utilise funds available with them under the programme of 'Assistance to States for Control of Animal Disease' (ASCAD), which is a Centrally Sponsored Scheme. The payment of compensation should be ensured immediately and simultaneously to culling.

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