Bird flu spread to three more areas in Assam on Wednesday, taking to 12 the total number of areas affected in the state.
As culling operations were in full swing in the northeastern state, culling of chickens in West Bengal’s Malda district, 340 km north of Kolkata, fell way behind target.
A section of villagers refused to hand over their poultry to health officials on the second day of culling in the Englishbazar area of Malda.
For the 400 families of the village, rearing chickens and ducks is the only means of livelihood. “Villagers said the money they are being offered would not be enough to buy new chickens,” said an official who did not want to be named.
The state government is paying compensations of Rs 50, Rs 40 and Rs 75 for chickens, broiler chickens and ducks, respectively. This is Rs 10 more than the amount paid per bird during the culling operations in January this year.