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Delhi’s Animal Husbandry Minister Gopal Rai on Friday said the bird flu virus is more or less over in the “Murga Mandi” area of the city, and added that the city government-appointed monitoring committee is actively monitoring and reviewing the prevailing situation to ensure that normalcy returns. “Virus is active, but not harmful, anti-virus operation to be continued and a meeting of coordination committee on bird flu has been called today. Situation is returning to normalcy and no virus has been reported in Murga Mandi,” Rai said.
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Earlier on Wednesday, the Centre had constituted a Committee, headed by Joint Commissioner, Department of Animal Husbandry, Dairy and Fisheries (DADF) to maintain constant vigil on the situation arising out of avian influenza (H5N8).
A control room (with telephone numbers 011-23384190 and 09448324121) has been set up in the Department of Animal Husbandry, Union Agriculture Ministry to provide advice and help round the clock.
Besides, monitoring the situation, the Committee will assist the State Government in taking steps to contain the spread of Avian Influenza.
The Centre has also established a control room in DADF.
Dr. Munialappa, Joint Commissioner has been named as the Nodal officer and will be available for advice and help round the clock.
The National High Security lab for animal diseases – NIHSAD – the world body OIE recognised facility for disease diagnosis in South Asia and the Four Regional Laboratories, and the Central lab at IVRI have been instructed to give all assistance to the State Governments and get sample tested in an emergency response manner.
In fact all 45 samples obtained from Delhi government at the Bhopal lab have been tested within the stipulated 72 hour time frame as per Bio-security level -4 requirements and 13 cases have tested positive for H5N8.
Similarly test results have been given for other cases in Kerala, Punjab and MP. As per available reports from other states, the disease incidence is in control.
The Animal Husbandry, Dairy and Fisheries Department of the States have issued guidelines for maintaining cleanliness in the zoological parks housing wild birds, water bodies as well as meat / poultry market areas where meat is sold.
Necessary precautions for human beings coming in the contact with poultry have also been reinforced although as per WHO observations, the transmission of H5N8 virus is very low.
All bird sanctuaries and areas where there are lakes have been advised to keep a close watch on the situation and in case of any suspicious death of birds, the State Government and the Centre may be notified.