Thursday 22 September 2011

Bird flu: the Avian Influenza in Resurgence mode

     Before, I begin with, although in blink memory but deep impacting, which influenced my inner mind are sorry face of one Afghan old woman, who was helplessly experiencing her green poppy field being destroyed by the Afghan army and another picture, a lady of same age as referred above was crying on seeing her hens were being hand picked by the Government officials for culling.
    In the former case, it was choice of option that had created mental distort to the Afghan lady and in latter case, it was choice of situation that had to play the role.
    But, both the situation gave me lots of emotional thinking may be it could be realization of the facts that difficulties to raise crops in Afghanistan with the sparsely distributed rain and another is usefulness, the hens play important role  in uplifting  rural economic development.
   If both the cases are seen through the prism, anyone could realize the matter of facts more humanly.
   Coming to the point of discussion that is “the resurgence of bird flu”; Avian Influenza. The United Nations warns (Health Buzz) that Bird flu is making comeback and it is the virus that infect birds and so is human being.
    Though it was reported that appearance of Bird flu has been declining since its appearance in the  middle of the 2003 but news report re-iterates, it is making its way again.
    Usually, what happens is, wild bird that is migratory birds often spreads this contagious and dangerous virus in virus free countries and contaminates the local fowl.
     It is reported that this virus has changed itself for more infliction that is precisely the Mutant strain – news report indicates that it has killed people in the Asia.
    With this mutant strain, it is most likely that the countries like Bangladesh, China, Egypt, India, Indonesia and Vietnam could be affected in this resurgence.
   This new strain was first detected in China and Vietnam As far as its infection mechanism is concerned, the virus is spread through wild migratory bird to local fowl or poultry and then people who keeps continuous activities in the poultry farm.
    However, human to human spread is reported to be rare and the risk is people working in the poultry farm.
    United Nations had already urged for more surveillance and preventive measure for tackling the situation. Virologist form Hong Kong University opined that the mutant strain that has been recently detected in the China and Vietnam is vaccine resistant and it may spread in Asia and beyond.
   The new mutant strain is called H5NI- and it is reported to be more virulent compare to its predecessor.
      Virologist Malik Peiris said that “There is a human H5N1 vaccine candidate that is a (WHO) recommended vaccine” another section opined that it doesn’t confer full protection against new variant.
     It is further reported that H5N1 can kill up to 60% of people infected. Symptoms of Bird flu infected people may exhibits; fever, cough, muscle aches, sore throat, eye infection it can also cause pneumonia, severe respiratory problem and succumbing to death.
     Although WHO (30/08/11) does not buy the argument the new mutant strain is more virulent and can cause increased risk to human being “ evolution of H5N1 avian influenza virus does not increase risk to public health”.
   Recently, this virus has again made appearance in Nadia, West Bengal, India (T.O.I, 22/09/11) and state Government has already started culling the hens & ducks across 13 villages of Nadia in 3(three) KM radius and earmarked 10(ten) KM radius areas for prevention.
   The interesting matter is that the Government has just declared on 4th July, 2011 that now it is virus free but sudden re-appearance has only created very tumultus affects on the very statement.
    In India, memory is still afresh as the matter of the fact that during 2006, this virus had caused huge loss to the people and Government.
   Many Poultry farm of Southern India like Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu had to suffer a lot due to such pandemic affects that virus had created.
    Another aspect of the matter is this virus may strike surrounding states and neighboring Bangladesh very soon if corrective measures are not taken in time.
   In Tripura, it appeared on February- March, 2011 and it was the last time it appeared in India. At that time culling of birds had been done by the State Government; this has virtually diminished local hens in the villages.
    So the time has come for the people and the State Government to be more careful and take preventive steps for further resurgence of deadly avian flu in the state.
    In Tripura, people have to be more careful because the porous international boundary, if poultry product let alone the migratory birds are imported without maintaining the proper quarantine measures, it would surely result in the rural economy and health hazard.
 So, keep vigilant and take prevention.


  1. As such there is no report of defection of birdflu in Tripura but I agree that we should be more careful.
    But in the main time, we should not creat any hypertension.

  2. I think Bird flu a viral disease of avian species is not new to us, we have seen that local hens collapse, may be those were the cases of this virus but as we did not know the causes, we did not take much care.