BIRD FLU|Over 1,200 birds found dead across India

Over 1,200 birds were found dead across the country on Saturday, including 900 in a poultry farm in Maharashtra, with the Centre saying that the outbreak of avian influenza has been reported in Uttar Pradesh, taking the total number of affected states to seven.

The Centre said confirmation of bird flu in Delhi, Chhattisgarh and Maharashtra, is awaited as the samples have been sent for testing, it said.     

Besides Uttar Pradesh, the other six states where bird flu is confirmed are Kerala, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh, Haryana and Gujarat.

Delhi Chief Minister ArvindKejriwal announced a ban on import of live birds in the national capital and closure of Ghazipur poultry market, the biggest in the city, for the next 10 days in view of bird flu scare.       

Noting that there is no confirmed case of avian influenza in Delhi so far, the chief minister said samples have been sent to Jalandhar laboratory. He also said that a 24-hour helpline has been set up for assistance of people.         

At least 24 crows have been found dead at a district park in south Delhi’s Jasola in the past three days and 10 ducks have died at the famous Sanjay Lake, officials said.

As many as 900 hens have died at a poultry farm in Murumba village in Parbhani district of Maharashtra, a senior official said.

Over 350 birds were reported dead in Rajasthan, taking the death count to 2,512, an official said.

Even as Gujarat recorded its first confirmed cases of bird flu, four crows were found dead at a village in Mangroltaluka in the state’s Junagadh district.

The state on Friday recorded its first cases of bird flu after samples taken from two dead lapwings recovered in the district tested positive for the infection. Six crows were found dead in Dakshina Kannada, bordering Kerala and samples have been sent for testing to ascertain the cause of death.

Five crows were found dead in a drain in the Sitabpur area in Uttarakhand’sPauriGarhwal district. Samples of the dead birds have been sent to a laboratory in Bhopal for testing, Veterinary Officer BM Gupta said.