Even as the presence of bird flu was confirmed in two areas of Kozhikode district of Kerala, two state ministers said on Saturday that there was no need to worry.
The bird flu was found at two poultry farms in and around Kozhikode Municipal Corporation limits. Authorities will now cull the poultry in affected areas.
State Forest and Animal Husbandry Minister K Raju said that test samples were drawn in Kerala two days back and sent to a laboratory in Bhopal in Madhya Pradesh.
"We have no authority under the rules to make such announcements. The samples were sent to the Bhopal lab, which has now confirmed the presence of bird flu in two areas of Kozhikode district. All precautions to tackle the situation have been taken and there is no need to worry," he said.
State Health Minister KK Shailaja also downplayed the issue and said it is "quite natural" during this season of the year. "There is nothing to be worried about. What is required is culling and it will take place," said Shailaja.
Kozhikode District Collector Sambhasiva Rao has been tasked with ensuring that proper protocol is employed to cull birds within one square km in the affected areas.
"Poultry in the affected areas will have to be culled and 25 special teams have been formed for the purpose. Everything is under control," said Mr Rao.
Each team consists of a veterinarian and four others.