Avian Influenza in the country
Cases of Avian Influenza have been confirmed in 10 states, as on 13 January, 2021. Further, cases of unnatural mortality of birds have been reported in Ganderbal district of Jammu and Kashmir and 4 districts of Jharkhand.
On January 12, 2021, a VC was organised under the chairmanship of Secretary, DAHD and was attended by representatives from 17 states. Through the meeting, states were advised to efficiently manage the spread of Avian Influenza in their respective states in accordance with the Action Plan 2021. To deal with the situation the states were asked to coordinate with the department of health and forest and sensitize them about the issue. States were also asked to maintain sufficient supply of protective equipment and maintain bio-security measures in poultry farms. States were also directed to identify BSL-II labs at the state level for speeding up the identification of infection in the state and timely introduction of control mechanism. The states were also asked to ensure that the infection does not spread among poultry, as it would have a high economic costfor the poultry farmers. It was found that many states are banning supply of poultry and poultry products from other states. As this would add to the negative impact on the poultry industry, the states were requested to reconsider such decision.
Awareness generation activities through newspaper advertisements, seminar etc are being conducted byseveral states. The states were encouraged to continue such awareness generation activities with support from their state Directorate of Information and Public Relationsand were assured about availability of funds for such activities. States should issue advisories on Dos and Don’ts regarding consumption of poultry and eggs, so as to avoid spreading of rumours/ misinformation thereby leading to economic loss for the poultry farmers.