Nearly 300 poultry birds have died an unnatural death in a few villages West of Guwahati in Assam. This has sparked fresh fears of bird flu causing health authorities to sound an alert in almost 40 villages around the area. Samples have been sent to laboratories in Pune and Bangalore to ascertain the reason behind these bird deaths, and the exact picture will be known soon, a veterinary official said.
"By Thursday we shall be getting the laboratory test reports and maybe we have to start the culling process as there has been large-scale reports of deaths coming in from nearby areas," Kamrup district magistrate R.C. Jain said.
"We have imposed a ban on sale and purchase of poultry and have asked people in the area not to consume chicken or duck as a precautionary measure."
Along with a general alert in the area, experts stationed in the region are even thinking of culling birds to prevent the spread of infection, if any.