West Garo Hills DC convenes meeting to discuss preparedness to control Avian Influenza.

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Two days after the Meghalaya government temporarily imposed a ban on the import of poultry from neighbouring Assam, as part of its measures to prevent the spread of the highly contagious bird flu, Meghalaya sound alert.
In view of the confirmed cases of bird flu (Avian influenza) in some parts of the country, the West Garo Hills Deputy Commissioner Ram Singh had convened a meeting with the District Animal Husbandry & Veterinary Officer, Tura along with other line departments of the district to discuss the preparedness, monitor and control the Avian Influenza or Bird Flu in the district.
While discussing during the meeting, Deputy Commissioner Ram Singh said that all precautionary measures need to be followed and directed the concerned department to organise awareness programs to all stakeholders including traders and suppliers with regard to the signs and symptoms of the diseases along with the restriction on the import of poultry and eggs from outside the state. He also directed them to distribute the pamphlets so that they can monitor and inform the concerned authority in case they find any dead birds around.
Meanwhile, the District Veterinary Officer, Tura J K Marak informed that as of now there is no such reported cases of death of birds in the district however, he urged everyone especially poultry farmers or poultry farms to take precautionary measures and alert the authority if they come across sudden and unusual mortality of poultry birds and wild or migratory birds in their neighbourhood. Informing about the signs and symptoms of Bird Flu or Avian Influenza, he said that it is a viral infection that can infect birds, humans and other animals that come in contact with a carrier and cautioned everyone not to touch the dead bird if found anywhere and to restrict entry and movement of people into poultry farm or premises. Maintenance of strict hygiene by washing hands with soap repeatedly is advised if a person handles poultry and raw poultry meat and should consume poultry meat and products after cooking it properly, he said.
Moreover, he informed that the department has formed Rapid Response Teams (RRT) in the district to oversee and monitor and control in case of an outbreak and will conduct awareness programs at market places and other locations for the benefit of the general public. Further, for any queries with regard to this can be contacted in the mobile numbers – 9863316850/ 8414953455/ 7085792897/ 7005689995/7005679941.
Project Director, DRDA, WGH Tura C N Sangma, CEO, Tura Municipal Board, Rezia Ch Sangma, Officers from line departments and representatives from Tura Traders union were present at the meeting.