Bird flu; high alert sounded in Meghalaya | india | Hindustan Times
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Bird flu; high alert sounded in Meghalaya

Meghalaya Chief Secretary Ranjan Chatterjee said an extensive awareness campaign has been launched to prevent an outbreak.

india Updated: Jan 23, 2008 13:04 IST

With avian flu spreading fast in West Bengal, Meghalaya has sounded a high alert and an expert team is expected to reach the state on Thursday to oversee precautionary measures.

Meghalaya Chief Secretary Ranjan Chatterjee said an extensive awareness campaign has been launched to prevent an outbreak.

"All veterinary officials, especially those along the Bangladesh borders, have been asked to monitor the situation closely and take all possible preventive measures," he said.

With cross-border smuggling of poultry reportedly continuing in the Indo-Bangla border area, additional check gates have been set along the border. The state government has already banned the entry of chickens from outside and has been inspecting those that have already entered.

The administration has collected around 100 blood samples of chicken from Ranikor, Borsora, Baghmara and other villages located near the Indo-Bangla border and has sent them for tests to Bhopal and Kolkata.

An expert team from the Union Animal Husbandry and Health departments would reach Meghalaya on Thursday to assess the situation. The state Animal Husbandry and Veterinary department has conducted surveillance, early detection and vaccination programmes.

A BSF official said the state's borders with Bangladesh have been sealed and the authorities have instructed all its troops along the Indo-Bangla border to be on vigil.

The government has constituted 150 rapid response teams, while 2170 "personnel protective equipment" have been kept ready.