Haryana government Friday ordered the culling of at least 1.66 lakh poultry birds from five poultry farms that fall in 1-km radius of two poultry farms in Panchkula whose samples have tested positive bird flu.
The decision was taken after the High Security Animal Disease Laboratory (HSADL), Bhopal, confirmed the presence of Avian Influenza (H5N8) virus in the samples from the two farms — Siddharth Poultry Farm and Nature Poultry Farm, which are located in village Kheri and Ganauli, respectively near Raipurrani, a part of the Barwala poultry belt.
Samples from another poultry farm, SKM Poultries, situated near village Mauli, have tested negative for the Avian Influenza.
The area within the radius of one-kilometre from the two poultry farms, whose poultry birds have tested H5N8 positive’, was declared as “Infected Zone” and the area from 1 km to 10 km as “Surveillance Zone”.
The culling process will start Saturday. Adequate arrangements including the digging of pits, gunny bags, to be used for packing the dead birds, PPE kits for the workers, bleaching powder for burying the dead birds etc were made for the process.
The state government has decided to compensate the affected farm owners with Rs 90 for each culled bird by the government.
Samples from the three poultry farms were sent to HSDL, Bhopal, directly by the Haryana Animal Husbandry and Dairying department.
Animal Husbandry and Dairying Minister J P Dalal said, “We have issued the notification for culling the poultry birds in the radius of 1-km of the two poultry farms. Farm owners will be compensated on the basis of Rs 90 per culled bird. Reports of other samples collected from different poultry farms are awaited. Task teams were constituted. Workers of affected poultry farms were instructed for not going out of the farms. The farm owners were instructed not to send the eggs, chickens out of the farms. At least a 10-km area in the radius of the epicentre has been cordoned for the next one month.”
Multiple teams of the health department were constituted for collecting the samples of farm workers. H5N8 strain of the Avian Influenza mostly transmits birds to birds. There are very minimum chances of transmitting of this particular virus from birds to human beings. A team from the side of Union Health Ministry is already stationed in Panchkula. Sources said a monitoring team from the Center will also arrive for looking after the culling process. Barwala has around 114 poultry farms, the second largest poultry belt in Asia.
Jalandhar RDDL forwards preliminary findings to HSADL
The Regional Disease Diagnosis Laboratory (RDDL), Jalandhar, has forwarded the preliminary findings of some of the samples of Barwala poultry birds to High Security Animal Disease Laboratory (HSADL), Bhopal, for the further confirmation of presence of Avian Influenza.
Sources said, “HSADL, Bhopal, will give its final findings about the presence of Avian Influenza among the samples.” A team of RDDL, Jalandhar, had visited the scores of Barwala poultry farms to collect the samples when it found that samples provided by Haryana Animal Husbandry and Dairying department were not sufficient for ascertaining the cause behind the high mortality of poultry birds.
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