The first cases of bird flu have been detected in dead chicken in the western state of Maharashtra in Nandurbar district. It was speculated that more than 50,000 birds are dead, but CNN-IBN reports quoted Jayant Gaikwad, collector of Nandurbar district as saying that 27,000 birds are confirmed deaths.
The Animal Husbandry department said that some samples have tested positive for the dreaded H5N1 virus. The rapid response team has sent five members down to the district and the Cabinet Secretary has called an emergency meeting on how best to tackle the situation. Police officers are reportedly planning to quarantine the area for up to 3 kilometers. The Maharashtra government has ordered the culling of the chickens in the affected area. The Navy is on stand by to distribute the medicines in the event of a human outbreak. Reports coming in are stressing that there are no human cases so far, but the situation could change very rapidly. Meanwhile, Andhra Pradesh is also on high alert and several samples have been sent for testing and the diagnosis is awaited.