Panic spread in the city after bird flu virus was found in samples taken from poultry shops in Kanadiya and Daly College area, prompting authorities to shut down all poultry shops within one km radius of these two areas, as a precaution.
The Indore Municipal Corporation is expected to cull all the chicken seized from these shops tomorrow morning, official sources said.
VIRUS SPREADS TO WILD BIRDS
Confirming the development, Director of Animal Husbandry Department, Dr RK Rokde said that after crows, avian influenza has spread to poultry and storks, as two storks have died of the virus in Sirpur. So far the virus has claimed 222 crows in Indore district, and over 700 in the state. In Daly College, another 17 crows were reported dead on Thursday.
Dr Rokde said the poultry closure orders were issued by additional chief secretary, Animal Husbandry department, J N Kansotiya.
Meanwhile, collector Manish Singh at a meeting on bird flu informed that a control room would be set up in Indore to monitor the situation.
Though there is panic, the only consolation is that bird flu infection in humans has not been seen as yet. As per experts, H5N8 is considered one of the less pathogenic subtypes for humans.
“Not a single patient has been found in Indore till today, and no patient has been found in the whole country in the last 16 years,” Dr PK Sharma, deputy director of Veterinary department, said.
Experts said the current outbreak is caused by the H5N8 strain, though there are other strains circulating globally. A series of outbreaks have been reported in Europe in the past weeks, with wild birds suspected to be spreading the disease.
Experts added that both H5N1 (another strain of avian influenza) and H5N8 have high pathogenicity (the ability of a pathogen to cause disease), but they don’t infect humans very effectively. However, past outbreaks among farm birds have needed extensive slaughtering programmes.
3 found Covid-19 positive, no bird flu in humans yet
“On the sixth day, the Health Department team surveyed 5,298 people covering 995 houses and no such symptoms have been found in anyone. “However, 52 samples were tested for Covid-19 in the area in the last two days, out of which, 3 were found positive on Thursday,” Dr Anil Dongre from Health department, said.
Even 15 bird specimens were taken from the bird-house, all of which were found to be negative. The health department says that no bird flu patient has been found in Indore till date
More cases recorded from nearby villages
The number of cases of crow deaths in nearby villages of Indore district has begun to surface and continue to soar. “More than 8 such deaths were reported from Sikandari village near Hatod on Thursday,” Sharma said. He added that similar death cases were also reported from Mhow, Patalpani and other villages near Hatod.
Sharma said that the team left in morning and will be investigating the forest and fields adjoining the two villages near Hatod.
Dr Patidar, in charge of the team, said that eight crows were found dead in the bush behind the Gaushala in village Sikandari.
Avian influenza deaths reported
Sirpur: 2 stork
Depalpur: 6 crows
Ambhakhedi: 2 crows
DC: 17 crows