M A I N   N E W S

Maharashtra culls 8 lakh chickens
Tribune News Service

Mumbai, February 19
The Animal Husbandry Department of Maharashtra today said more than eight lakh chickens had been culled in Navapur tehsil of Nandurbar district where bird flu was detected. The government had given orders to exterminate all chickens in the tehsil. All fowls, including broilers and country chicken, are being exterminated.

Animal Husbandry Minister Anees Ahmed said vaccines had been rushed to the district and were being administered to chickens in a 3 km radius around the town. About two lakh chickens were being administered the vaccine.

Poultry owners would be compensated at the rate of Rs 40 for every bird culled and both state and the Centre would share the burden on a 50:50 basis. In all, 17 poultry farms in and around Navapur have been sealed. “The government has demanded a probe to see how the birds got infected with avian flu,” Mr Ahmed said. The District Collector had been entrusted with keeping records of birds culled for the purpose of providing compensation.

Health Minister Vimal Mundada said a house-to-house survey had been launched in Navapur to identify people suffering from symptoms similar to bird flu. Today, the authorities rushed in 20 medical teams for the survey. Nineteen villages around Navapur had been brought under the scanner following the outbreak of bird flu.

The authorities have asked hospitals in Mumbai to set up special wards in case of an outbreak of bird flu. So far the government had rushed in 1200 safety kits and an equal number of face masks to Navapur.

No fresh stocks of chicken are arriving in the city. Trucks carrying poultry are being halted at the city limits for verification.


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