After 10 monkeys were found dead due to suspected pneumonia at a village in Sambhal district in the last four days, the district administration has started screening residents.
The administration on Friday screened 330 people of Pawasa village and sanitised it. A 45-year-old man has been sent to quarantine and his sample collected as he had shown coronavirus-like symptoms, officials said.
A detailed test report to ascertain the cause of monkeys’ death is awaited. The samples of two carcasses have been sent to Bareilly’s Indian Veterinary Research Institute (IVRI).
Sambhal Chief Medical Officer Dr Amita Singh said. “Five teams of the Health Department have screened 330 people in the village. A 45-year-old was found with mild fever and cough for the last four days. The medical team collected his sample and later put him in quarantine,” said Singh.
Divisional Forest Officer of Sambhal Devendra Kumar Chaturvedi said, “We want to verify if the deaths are connected to coronavirus. We are waiting for the IVRI report.”
He added that an autopsy report of a monkey, which was sent on Wednesday, attributed the death to pneumonia. According to Chaturvedi, the 10 carcasses were found on a road near a pond in the village. Two of the carcasses were spotted on Friday.
The district administration on Friday sent another carcass to IVRI for autopsy.
Sambhal District Magistrate Avinash Krishna Singh said the administration had decided to screen people living close to the pond as a precaution against the pandemic. He said so far officials had not found any evidence linking deaths to coronavirus.
IVRI director RK Singh said the autopsy reports were being prepared, refusing to reveal more details. Chief Veterinary officer, Sambhal, Dr Vinod Kumar suspect more bodies of monkey could be recovered from the village.
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