Punjab reports first suspected case of bird flu, samples sent to Bhopal for confirmation

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Chandigarh, Jan 15 (PTI) Punjab on Friday reported its first suspected cases of bird flu with samples from two poultry farms in Mohali testing positive for avian influenza.

The samples have now been sent to a Bhopal facility for confirmation. According to an official, the samples were collected from the poultry farms at Behra village in Mohali's Dera Bassi and were tested at the Regional Disease Diagnostic Laboratory in Jalandhar. The samples have now been sent to the Bhopal's National Institute of High Security Animal Diseases for confirmation, the official added. The Bhopal facility is the final authority for declaring bird flu.

Meanwhile, Mohali Deputy Commissioner Girish Dayalan sought to allay fears over the supected cases.

He said the administration is alert and regular sampling is being done to keep tabs on suspected cases of bird flu. Neighbouring Haryana has already declared bird flu and had announced to cull over 1.60 lakh birds of five poultry farms in Panchkula district. Earlier, Punjab had sounded an alert and pulled all stops to keep the state safe from the possible effect of an outbreak in its neighbouring states. PTI CHS VSD RDK RDK