All district collectors in Orissa have been instructed to ban the provision of eggs from midday meals as a precautionary measure against bird flu. Orissa has over 59, 700 primary schools, which provide eggs to approximately 5.2 million students every year. The ban would be retained for at least a month, according to official sources.
'The state government has sent this instruction on Wednesday evening after a top level meeting in the state secretariat,' said a state health official of the women and child development department.
A 15-day ban on chicken import from the adjacent states was imposed recently as a bird flu protective measure. Although no reports of bird flu infection have been reported so far, an alert has been sounded. In addition, control rooms have been established at Bhubaneshwar and Cuttack to monitor the situation closely.
The veterinary officials have been urged to conduct inspection visits in poultry farms and draw blood samples of analysis from suspected cases. They have been asked to bring any such case to the immediate notice. With such effective protective measures, Orissa is unlikely to witness any bird flu infection.