Media reports say that Purulia district became the tenth district in West Bengal to be declared affected by the deadly H5N1 bird flu virus. District Magistrate Deepak Ranjan Kar said bird flu surfaced at Ramchandrapur village under Santuri block in the district for the first time. Samples from the district sent to central laboratories tested positive, he said to media. Culling operations would begin in the village on Saturday, he added.
Nine of the 19 districts of West Bengal - Bankura, Burdwan, Cooch Behar, Hooghly, Malda, Murshidabad, Nadia, Dakhin Dinajpur and Birbhum - have already been affected by the avian influenza. Meanwhile West Bengal has nearly culled over one million poultry birds in the past 10 days even as the avian influenza continues to cause havoc in the state and impact its rural economy.