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Bird flu lies 5 km away from Kolkata
January 31, 2008 19:04 IST
Despite the West Bengal government's repeated assurance that bird flu is under control, the deadly virus appears to be creeping towards the metropolis and lies barely five kilometers away.
500 chicken died of suspected avian flu in one poultry in the last three days in Mahestala Municipality, five km from Kolkata. The municipality collected samples on Wednesday and sent them to the National Institute of Virology in Bhopal. It will take three days to get the result.
Till then, nearly 3,000 people of the ward will have to keep their fingers crossed. Amal Bol, a resident of Benepukur in the municipality, feared that he or his family members might be affected by the H5N1 virus because it was at his poultry that the 500 bird deaths had occurred. "I have informed the health department, the animal resource development department and the municipality but no one took the initiative to protect me or the 23 members in my family," said Bol. He said that on Wednesday samples were collected but no preventive action was taken.
Mahestala municipality chairman Kali Bhandari said he was aware of the poultry deaths and samples had been sent for testing. "We have collected the samples but we will have to wait for another 72 hours for the report to come," Bhandari said.
The police had been asked to ensure that there was no movement of poultry from the affected area.