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Swine flu threat grows; 600 deaths, 12.5k cases this year

Swine flu, the viral illness that became a pandemic in 2009, has made a comeback this year, claiming nearly 600 lives across the country so far this year, with close to 12,500 cases being reported.Maharashtra, with 284 deaths, is the worst affected, followed by Gujarat (75), Kerala (63) and Rajasthan (59), government data shows. In Delhi, official figures state, 241 people have tested positive for swine flu and four have died, as on July 9. Doctors said the number of deaths could be higher. “People are visiting hospitals late. This…

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Ducks Gassed in Thousands as France Fights Bird Flu Virus

Workers wearing masks and protective clothes gassed thousands of ducks in southwest France on Friday, in a massive cull that was ordered in an attempt to prevent a spread of the H5N8 bird flu virus. At one farm in the village of Latrille, in the heartland of duck and geese rearing country, 8,000 ducks were taken by hand and put in coloured metal containers where carbon dioxide was piped in to kill them, normally within seconds. In scenes reminiscent of apocalypse-themed movies, workers clad in head-to-toe protective suits, face-visors and…

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Gujarat Begins To Cull Birds After Avian Flu Scare

As avian or bird flu reared its head in Gujarat after a decade, the state government sounded an alert and declared a 10-km radius around a poultry facility in Hathijan in Ahmedabad district a ‘regulated zone’ and culled over 1,500 birds till Wednesday afternoon. The government also placed restrictions on movement of poultry, eggs, bird droppings, farm machinery and any other equipment in the said area. The action comes a week ahead of the high-profile global investment summit ‘Vibrant Gujarat’ to be inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on January…

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China Confirms Human Bird Flu Case in Guizhou Province

Health authorities in the southern Chinese province of Guizhou have confirmed a new human case of H7N9 avian influenza, state radio said, bringing the total number of human infections of the highly pathogenic strain to 19 this winter. The 49-year old man, who is a chicken trader, was being treated in hospital in Qiannan prefecture, the report said on Sunday. The local authorities were taking precautions to try and prevent the infection from spreading, the report said. A total of 19 people have been infected with bird flu in China…

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Bird Flu Infects 7 People in China This Month, Killing Two

China has reported at least seven cases of bird flu in humans across the country this month, including two deaths, as authorities take steps to guard against an outbreak. Five cases of H7N9 bird flu infections have been diagnosed in central Anhui province since Dec. 8, and two people have died, state media reported. In Shanghai, officials said this week that a man was diagnosed with H7N9 and is being treated in a city hospital. Another case has been reported in Xiamen in coastal Fujian province, where poultry sales have…

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