Three more bird deaths reported in Delhi

Three more bird deaths reported in Delhi

New Delhi: Bird flu scare continues to grip the national capital as three more bird deaths including one at zoo and two at Shakti Sthal were today reported, taking the toll to 69.

However, zoo curator Riyaz Khan told PTI that the grey partridge, that died, was a captive bird which succumbed to injuries after being attacked by another bird at the enclosure.

“The death cannot be equated with bird flu,” Khan said.

Both zoo and Shakti Sthal, the memorial of former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi, continued to remain shut. Six duck deaths have been reported from Shakti sthal in the last three days.

Meanwhile, the Centre deputed a doctor who visited and examined exposed employees of the zoo. The grey partridge’s death came six days after the zoo had reported its last avian death.

It set alarm bells ringing as only yesterday Delhi Development Minister Gopal Rai had termed the situation there as a “sign of relief”.

The city government has already issued an 11-point health advisory with a list of dos and dont’s. It has asked people to refrain from consuming half-boiled eggs and meat.

A senior Delhi government official said that no new report has been received from both laboratories in Bhopal and Jalandhar run by the Centre, despite Rai’s request to expedite the process.

Rai also wrote an open letter addressed to all MLAs, municipal councillors and the general public seeking their help in dealing with avian influenza.

The minister issued an appeal to the people to inform the authorities if there is no spray of anti-virus Sodium Hypochlorite at water bodies in their vicinity where birds gather.

The Delhi government has sent 81 samples to laboratories in Bhopal and Jalandhar so far and out of them, the city administration has received reports of 27 samples.

Yesterday, Rai had met Union Agriculture Minister Radha Mohan Singh and urged him to direct labs to expedite the test reports so that the city government can take preventive steps.

Rai had also requested him to issue a health advisory to make people aware about dos and dont’s in the wake of the avian influenza gripping parts of the city.