Alert on border to check flu

Jhapa, February 21:

The Nepal-India border has been put under alert following the news of bird flu in India, a report from Jhapa said.

Officer at the Livestock Quarantine Check post (Jhapa) Dr Dilip Sapkota said custom check posts have been put under special alert since yesterday. Mobile teams have been deployed in major checkposts like Ilam, Pashupati Nagar, Kakarvitta and Gauriganj, Sapkota said.

A dealer of poultry products in Bharadapur, Asalam Minya, said the number of customers purchasing poultry products has gone down by 50 per cent after news of bird flu outbreak in India surfaced. A local poultry owner, Khadga Shrestha, expressed distress over the possibility of decrease in the sale of chickens.

Maiya Shrestha, a hotelier, said customers have begun discarding chicken meat and the number of customers visiting her hotel has also gone down.

Bird flu virus will not enter into the country if the concerned entrepreneurs take precautionary measures and quarantine check posts are made more effective, a report from Chitwan, citing poultry entrepreneurs, said.

A meeting of poultry entrepreneurs of Chitwan was held yesterday to discuss the precautionary measures that can be taken against avian flu after H5N1 bird flu virus was traced in the Indian state of Maharastra.

The meet stressed the need to monitor the border areas as bird flu virus can enter Nepal via the border areas. A team will be sent to monitor the border areas, chairman, Poultry Entrepreneurs Forum (PEF), Dr Til Chandra Bhattarai, said.

Leader of the team deputed for the western terai, Kapil Babu Khanal, said the team will meet officials of the Local Administration and Quarantine check posts.

Dr Bhattarai of the Poultry Entrepreneurs Forum called on the entrepreneurs to be alert and adopt bio-security technology.

“We have notified the entrepreneurs to opt for lab tests if a large number of chickens are found dead and told them to take necessary precautionary measures.”

Following the ‘outbreaks’ of birth flu in some Indian border towns, veterinary workers have informed poultry farmers in Waling, Putalibazaar, Galyang, Bayardhari, Rambachchha, Mirdi, Mirmi, Maludunga, Fedikhola, Arjunchaupari about measures that can be taken to prevent bird flu, a report from Syangja said.

A bazaar monitoring committee of the Nepal Eggs Producers’ central committee destroyed white eggs in Parasi today, fearing eggs imported from India might contain bird flu virus, a report said.