Sukhna Lake cordoned off after bird flu scare

  • PTI, None, Chandigarh
  • Updated: Dec 18, 2014 16:12 IST

The famous Sukhna Lake here was cordoned off early today after one of geese which recently died under mysterious circumstances was tested positive for much-feared avian influenza.

Sukhna Lake was cordoned off this morning and entry for public was closed from the entrance of the water body to its regulator end as a precautionary measure, with boating and other activities for tourists stopped, officials said here.

Police personnel, wearing masks on their mouths, have also been deployed in the area.

Haryana and Punjab Raj Bhawans, besides residences of top bureaucrats, are located in the vicinity of the lake.

The authorities have also decided to begin the process of culling of nearly 70 ducks (geese) at the lake to prevent any outbreak of bird flu in the city.

"We have taken the decision to cull the geese, numbering around 70," director of Chandigarh's Animal Husbandry
Department Prince Dhawan said.

Dhawan, who is also UT's nodal officer for avian flu control measures, along with other officials of the department met senior officials of the UT administration to discuss the matter to tackle the situation.

More than 35 geese had died at the lake recently under mysterious circumstances.

The administration got alert after it was confirmed that one of the ducks had perished due to H5N1.

Officials of the Union Territory administration said they were constantly in touch with the central government officials and were fully prepared to handle any contingency, even as the public was requested not to panic and co-operate with the administration at this stage.

The island area where the ducks are residing has been fenced and movement of the birds has been restricted.

Five rapid response teams have been formed and mobilised to counter any untoward situation.

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