WHO sounds H5N1 alarm bell

By Our Reporter

 SHILLONG: The World Health Organization (WHO) has sounded alarm bells after two reported outbreaks of the highly pathogenic avian influenza H5N1 in poultry farms in Odisha and one in a state run farm in East Garo Hills in Meghalaya.

The samples from the two states which were sent to the National High Security Animal Disease Laboratory in Bhopal confirmed that fowls from the poultry farms tested positive for the scientific polymerase chain reaction test and virus isolation test.

The epidemiological investigation is still on in these affected sites and closure of poultry markets in a 10km radius along with prohibition of transport, which are standard procedures, have been implemented, said the Secretary, Government of India, Department of Animal Husbandary, Dairying and Fisheries of the Ministry of Culture.

Meanwhile, around 32,000 birds have been culled from the two outbreak sites in Odisha. In East Garo Hills, Meghalaya similar quarantine restrictions have been put in place and around 5,000 birds were culled.

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