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BIRD FLU - 2 MORE DISTRICT HIT, CULLING GAINS MOMENTUM - NARESH KADYAN


Animals  (tags: protection, animals, animaladvocates )


- 3560 days ago - tribuneindia.com
Mass culling is not a solution ???????????????



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Past Member (0)
Saturday January 19, 2008, 8:05 pm
Jind, January 19
In the wake of official reports of bird flu in West Bengal and some neighbouring countries, a scare has hit poultry sales in Jind also, which is one of the most prominent hubs of poultry farming in the northern part of the country.

Though there is a very minor drop in the overall business at the production level, rates of poultry products, including eggs and chicken, have gone down sharply at the consumer end. The district has over a dozen hatcheries and at least 100 poultry farms.

“While the overall consumption of poultry products has not been extraordinarily high here in comparison to other districts of the state, the district has emerged as a frontrunner in matter of production and supply of such products,” said Rattan Singh, a poultry farmer.

Claiming that the fear of bird flu had started haunting minds of a majority of farmers because of a drop in demand of poultry products, he said the fear of the disease had not hit breeders or owners of hatcheries, who supply chicks to them as there had been no remarkable decrease in the rate of the product.

He said the price of one piece of chick was now hovering around Rs 14 against the rate, which had been between Rs 17 and 18 earlier.

Stating that though there had been no report of outbreak of bird flu from anywhere in the state so far, he claimed that the chicks here had been already prone to a viral fever, which had caused death of a large number of small birds recently. He said small and medium farmers would be affected the most if bird flu hits the district and no safety cover had been provided at any level by government authorities.

“I lost over 1,000 chicks in the past week due to a viral disease for which no drug or medicine was available in the market,” he said.

A member of the Poultry Farmers Association here said the district had only half a dozen farms, which supplied eggs in the market, while a majority of the supply comes from Ambala district.

There had been around 10 per cent negative affect on the overall business so far after the reports of bird flu in West Bengal.
 

Past Member (0)
Sunday January 20, 2008, 7:10 pm
Kolkata, January 20
The culling operation in the bird flu-infected districts of Birbhum and Nadia today suffered a setback following the refusal by the government-recruited veterinary doctors to undertake the drive in the wake of yesterday’s attack on them at Nalhati and Rampurhat in the worst-hit Birbhum district.

As a result, today’s target of culling 50,000 infested birds and chickens could not be completed. State government officials accompanying union minister of state for health Panabaka Lakshmi told her during her visit to Tagore’s Santinektan about today’s progress in the culling drive.

The minister had already expressed dissatisfaction at the poor handling of the bird flu situation. She visited the block hospitals at Rampurhat and Bolpur and supervised the arrangements in the isolated wards for treating the bird flu affected people for which special assistance and aids had been sanctioned by the union health ministry.

According to official sources, of the five volunteers and one doctor, who were hospitalised after yesterday’s attack, the condition of the two was stated to be critical. However, the others were released after first aid.

These officials were attacked during the culling operation at two blocks at Nalhati and one block at Rampurhat by an angry mob, which was protesting against the indiscriminate killing of birds, chickens and ducks everywhere.

Moreover, the owners of these animals alleged that so far they had not received any compensation for these destroyed culled birds and chickens.

State animal husbandry minister Anisur Rahman, however, denied that the culling operation suffered any major setback today. However, he admitted the doctors and volunteers engaged in the drive were demanding safety and security after yesterday’s incident. Initially, they declined to undertake the operation, but later with the police escort they conducted the drive in some areas.

He said from tomorrow a special culling drive would be launched in all affected districts by different groups for completing the culling of the targeted five lakh infected birds and chickens within the next seven days.

Some more areas in several districts, both in south and north Bengal, had fallen under the bird flu attack and the gradual spreading of the virus day by day to new areas was worrying the government. So far, the bird flu had been detected in Nadia, Murshidabad, Birbhum, Burdwan and South Dinajpur. But, today, several areas in the remote border district of Cochbehar and the industrial town of Howrah were reported to be in the grip of bird flu.

Though there was no report of the bid flu outbreak in Kolkata, the carcass of several suspected bird flu victims, including kites and seasonal birds, had been detected in an open field in the Sunderbans in south 24-parganas.
 

Past Member (0)
Tuesday January 22, 2008, 6:10 pm
http://www.tribuneindia.com/2008/20080123/main5.htm
New Delhi, January 22
The UPA government sought to allay fears today about bird flu spreading in West Bengal among the people. “To date we have not got any confirmation of humans been affected by the flu,” union Health minister Anbumani Ramadoss told mediapersons here on the sidelines of a function here.

Even as more districts in West Bengal were been afflicted by flu, Ramadoss claimed that screening was conducted within 10 km of the affected areas and all people who lived in villages had been randomly tested by the teams of his ministry. “There is no reason to be concerned about any human cases of bird flu,” the minister observed. At the same time Ramdoss insisted that “we are all vigilant.”

The minister disclosed that three samples which had been sent to the National Institute of Communicable Diseases in the national capital had tested negative. Simultaneously, the NICD, Kolkata, which tested five samples, has confirmed today that all of them were negative for the presence of avian influenza.

Though there have been complaints of slow culling of birds, the minister said yesterday 71,000 chicken were culled and 61,000 eggs destroyed.

Earlier, inaugurating the centenary celebrations of the Trained Nurses Association of India (TNAI), Ramdoss emphasises that the nursing profession occupies a strategic position in the primary healthcare network and the mainstay of the healthcare delivery system.

He said besides patients care, nurses were required today for unconventional roles like promoting healthcare practices, educating people about disease prevention, offering family welfare services, counselling and motivation. Nurses are the ones who provide the most vital maternal and child heath care services to the community.

Ramdoss said higher allocation of Rs 2,900 crore has been proposed during the XII Plan besides Rs 280 crore for the existing schemes.
 

Past Member (0)
Friday January 25, 2008, 2:03 am
Rain hampers culling, bordering states on alert

Kolkata, January 24
Rains in eight bird flu hit districts of West Bengal hampered culling operations today even as the Malda district administration is yet to begin the destruction of poultry even after 72 hours of the virus being detected in the area.

Malda District Magistrate C.R. Das said besides Katihar in adjoining Bihar, the virus might spread to North Dinazpur district since it too falls within 10 km radius of the affected Chanchol-1 block of Malda district.

The district administration was yet to start the culling operation due to lack of personnel, Das said. The virus was detected in poultry on January 21.

Unseasonal rain since yesterday has, meanwhile, hampered culling in Bankura, Birbhum, Hooghly, Coochbehar, Nadia, South Dinazpur, Bardhaman and Murshidabad districts. There were reports of resentments among poultry owners for not getting the promised compensation.

Animal resources development minister Anisur Rehman said coupons were distributed among those who lost poultry.

Those coupons could be encashed from respective panchayat offices.

Meanwhile, a truck carrying 1,000 chickens, being brought from West Midnapore district, was intercepted by local people and handed over to the police last night at Moina police station area of East Medinipur district, where already over 2,000 chickens had died during the past few days.

District Magistrate of West Midnapore district N.S. Nigam said following poultry death, blood samples had been sent to Bhopal from Binpur, Sakrail and Chandrakona town and the report was awaited.

Coochbehar district, which was declared bird flu hit yesterday after Dinhata-1 block samples tested positive, would begin culling from tomorrow.

Meanwhile, blood samples were also sent from Mathabanga-1, Mekhaliganj and Tufanganj blocks for testing following the death of about 500 chickens for the past few days, District Magistrate, Rajesh Kumar Sinha said.

Rezinanagar, Naoda and Nabogram blocks of Murshidabad district were also awaiting result from Bhopal, district officials said.

A report from Nadia said a large section of tribal villagers had gathered near the Raikhas area under Haringhata block to resist culling teams alleging that their birds were healthy.

Patna: The Bihar government today ordered the culling of chickens in areas close to West Bengal following the outbreak of avian flu in that state.

Deputy Chief Minister Sushil Kumar Modi, who also holds the animal husbandry portfolio, told UNI here that chickens were being culled in Katihar district bordering the worst hit Malda district of Bengal.

He said the chickens in six panchayats of Azamgarh block of Katihar district were being culled and the affected poultry farmers would be suitably compensated as per norms of the Centre.

Gorakhpur: After West Bengal, the bird flu outbreak is haunting eastern Uttar Pradesh owing to the migration of birds from Nepal.

An emergency centre has been set up here, and directives have been issued to officials, sources said.

“No case of avian flu has been detected in UP so far...but due to the migration of birds in Gorakhpur’s Ramgarh Taal and Sant Kabirnagar’s Bakhira Jheel, an emergency centre has been established,” animal husbandry department Deputy Director Markandey said here today.

Besides, medical teams had been set up in Gorakhpur and Basti divisions. Medicos had been also directed to take blood samples of birds migrating from Nepal and sent them to Pune and Bhopal for tests, he informed.

Several lakh people are associated with poultry business in the region, therefore, awareness was being created about the threat, the deputy director added.

Guwahati: The dreaded avian flu is suspected to have reached Assam’s Goalpara district and neighbouring Khasi hills of Meghalaya.

Though official sources refused to confirm the suspected detection of H5N1 virus in poultry in Assam, it is suspected that a visiting Central team is convinced of the spread of the virus to the North-East states also. — Agencies
 

Past Member (0)
Friday January 25, 2008, 2:04 am
Centre asks Bihar, Jharkhand to ban poultry from Bengal
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, January 24
With the Centre notifying avian influenza in poultry in a number of blocks spread over nine districts in West Bengal, it has simultaneously alerted all states to take preventive measures and deputed health teams to review the level of preparedness to check the spread of the disease to new areas.

The Centre has also instructed Jharkhand, Bihar and Assam, which share a common border with West Bengal, to ban and prevent any entry of poultry or related products from West Bengal. The preparedness of the districts bordering West Bengal is also being reviewed through video conference with the state/district authorities.

Official sources said thus far all five suspected cases of human infection had been found to be negative of the deadly H5N1 virus following tests at the high security animal disease laboratory.

The Centre today took stock of the bird flu outbreak in West Bengal following which Prime Minister Manmohan Singh directed the government to launch an awareness campaign to inform people about the disease. Agriculture minister Sharad Pawar briefed the Union Cabinet on the situation, although it was not on the agenda of the meeting.

“I have been directed by the Prime Minister to give widespread publicity on the bird flu situation so we are launching a campaign immediately,” information and broadcasting minister P.R. Dasmunsi told reporters after the meeting. He said the campaign would be launched on All India Radio (AIR) as not many villages had access to television.

Dasmunsi also said there was a delay on the part of the state government in reporting the outbreak and a timely joint initiative could have been launched earlier to control its escalation. “It (bird flu) started on January 4 in some pockets of West Bengal and the attention of the Centre was drawn on January 11,” he said. “There was a little delay in culling of birds,” he added.
 

Past Member (0)
Friday January 25, 2008, 2:42 am
KOLKATA: Blaming the West Bengal government for the spread of bird flu in the state, People for Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) today said the outbreak could have been prevented if the government had heeded its advice to enforce better animal husbandry practices in June last year.

"Our Vegan Campaign Coordinator Rohini Kamath had written to the director of W B Animal Husbandry in June, warning of an outbreak of bird flu if best husbandry practices were not ensured in poultry farms and supply chains. We did not get any response," PETA official N G Jayasimha told reporters here.

Culling was the only option under the present situation, but it was not being done as per guidelines of the WHO and the Royal Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, thus keeping the possibility open for the virus to spread, he said.

Displaying shocking video footage of poultry management shot by undercover PETA activists, he said the deadly H5N1 virus could spread very fast because of intensive confinement of the birds.

"Bird flu can be caught by humans who handle infected birds and experts fear that the virus will eventually mutate into a form that is transmissible among humans, setting off a worldwide pandemic," the PETA official said.

Jayasimha said the problem with West Bengal and the North Eastern states is that these states mostly have backyard farms where husbandry practices were far from healthy.

In reply to a question, he said his organisation has filed an application under the RTI Act to find out what was preventing the government from enforcing the best animal husbandry practices.
 

Past Member (0)
Friday January 25, 2008, 5:42 pm
Kolkata, January 25
Bird flu has spread to two more districts of Howrah and Purulia, bringing the number of districts hit by the disease in West Bengal to nine.

Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee said he called up agriculture minister Sharad Pawar and sought an active participation of the Centre to arrest the situation in the state.

With today’s reports of bird flu spreading to Howrah and Purulia, he felt the situation was far from normal.

He said the government was taking contingency measures to fight the disease on a war footing.

A larger number of veterinarians, volunteers and experts had been requisitioned to carry out culling of the infected birds and to check spread of the disease.

State animal husbandry minister Anisur Rahman expressed helplessness when he received the report from Bhopal Test Centre that the blood test of chickens and ducks sent from Howrah and Purulia had bird flu virus.

Doctors, nurses and other staff in all medical colleges of the affected districts and Kolkata have been asked to report for duty on Republic Day and during other holidays.

Home secretary Prasad Ranjan Roy said all border districts had been alerted and transhipments of birds, chickens and ducks from Bengal to other states had been stopped. He said so far Kolkata was safe.

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The wildlife department has issued a bird flu alert in Kerala, a major consumer of poultry products from other states.

AGARTALA: The Tripura government has banned the entry of poultry and poultry feed from outside the state and neighbouring Bangladesh.
 
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