Bird flu in Delhi: NDMC forms rapid response team for field inspections

Ducks at New Delhi’s Sanjay Lake.
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A senior NDMC official said that the team will visit different areas in the jurisdiction of the civic body to examine birds.

Ducks at New Delhi’s Sanjay Lake.
Ducks at New Delhi’s Sanjay Lake.

Soon after the Delhi government on Monday declared that the national Capital is hit by bird flu, the New Delhi Municipal Council (NDMC) set up a rapid response team to carry out field inspections to examine birds such as chicken, ducks or other migratory birds in NDMC area. The NDMC has also cordoned off the duck corner in Lodhi Garden due to the bird flu scare, officials said.

NDMC controls 42.74 square kilometre area which is nearly 3% of Delhi’s total area. The area under the Council’s control mainly includes Lutyens Delhi, diplomatic area of Chanakyapuri, and residential areas of government officials such as Sarojini Nagar, East Kidwai Nagar, Gole Market.

The NDMC region has a number of popular parks such as Lodhi Garden and Nehru Park. Civic officials said that any decision on closure of parks due to bird flu is yet to be taken.

“We are yet to decide whether to close parks. A direction in this connection might be issued by today (Monday) evening. We have, however, advised visitors not to go near the duck corner in Lodhi Garden and have cordoned it off and sprayed mixed lime in and around the enclosure to reduce chances of virus infection,” an official said.

The five-member rapid response team will work under the supervision of medical superintendent of NDMC’s Moti Bagh veterinary hospital. An order in this connection has also been issued. Details regarding actions taken by the three municipalities— North, South and East — are yet to come.

According to the document, the rapid response team also has one veterinary surgeon (from veterinary hospital Moti Bagh), area sanitary inspector, senior statistical investigator and medical social worker.

A senior NDMC official said that the team will visit different areas in the jurisdiction of the civic body to examine birds especially chicken, ducks, migratory birds and others and also take all necessary measures for prevention and control of avian flu in the NDMC area.

The Delhi government on Monday said that the city is now affected with bird flu as eight of the 109 samples sent for testing were positive.

The culling of live birds was immediately initiated from Monday morning in Sanjay Lake Park in Mayur Vihar Phase 2. The park had been declared an “alert zone” on Sunday after 17 more ducks were found dead in the green area. Officials said that the culling in more areas will follow soon.

The scare of bird flu had engulfed the city last week when over 100 crows were found dead at parks in Mayur Vihar-3, Hastsal and Dwarka areas.


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