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Shikhar Dhawan feeds birds amid bird flu, Varanasi DM says action to be taken against boatman

Eyebrows were raised after Shikhar Dhawan shared a social media post in which the player can be seen feeding birds during a boat ride in Varanasi.

Published: 24th January 2021 05:48 PM  |   Last Updated: 24th January 2021 05:48 PM   |  A+A-

Senior India opener Shikhar Dhawan

Senior India opener Shikhar Dhawan (Photo | PTI)

By ANI

VARANASI: Kaushal Raj Sharma, District Magistrate, Varanasi, has said that action will be taken against boatmen who did not follow the administration's guidelines and allowed tourists on their boats to feed the birds amid the bird flu.

Eyebrows were raised after Indian cricketer Shikhar Dhawan shared a social media post in which the player can be seen feeding birds during a boat ride in Varanasi. "Happiness is feeding birds," Dhawan had written on Instagram while sharing pictures.

However, Sharma said action will only be taken against the boatmen, not the tourists.

"There was some information that some boatmen are not adhering to the administration's instructions and the tourists on their boats are feeding the birds. So, these boatmen are being identified and tourists generally are not aware of such things," Sharma told ANI.

"However, it was made clear by the police and the administration to the boatmen that they should not allow the tourists on their boat to feed the birds. Whosoever flouted these rules will be served notice and they will be asked as to why their license should not be canceled... No action will be taken against the tourists," he added.

The central government on Thursday informed that avian influenza or bird flu has been confirmed in six states for poultry birds and in 10 states for the crow, migratory and wild birds till January 21.

"As of 21st January 2021, outbreaks of Avian Influenza (AI) have been confirmed in poultry birds in 6 States (Chhattisgarh, Haryana, Kerala, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, and Punjab). AI has also been confirmed in Crow/Migratory/ Wild birds in 10 States (Chhattisgarh, Delhi, Gujarat, Himachal Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Punjab, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, and Uttarakhand)," the Ministry of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry, and Dairying had said.

Further, Avian Influenza has been confirmed in poultry samples from Madhya Pradesh's Raisen district, in Chhattisgarh's Dantewada, and in Thane, Yavatmal, Wardha, Gondia, Ahmednagar, and Hingoli districts of Maharashtra.

Influenza has been confirmed in geese in the States of Uttar Pradesh's Unnao district. "Control and Containment Operations are underway in the affected epicentres of Chhattisgarh, Kerala, Madhya Pradesh, and Maharashtra," the ministry had said.

"The central team formed for monitoring the situation in the affected areas of the country has visited Parbhani district of Maharashtra to monitor the epicentres of the outbreak and to conduct epidemiological studies," it had added.



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