Riyadh, Feb 8: Saudi Arabia on Thursday banned the import of poultry products from India after a bird flu of fatal nature was reported recently. Saudi agricultural ministry, in its order, said that live birds, hatching eggs and chicks from India will be banned from India. World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE), in its report,  had said that Karnataka faced an outbreak of a highly contagious bird flu virus near Bengaluru in the southern state of Karnataka.

The outbreak was confirmed by Ministry of Agriculture officials in the national capital.  In an official statement, the Union agriculture ministry said that Bhopal-based National Institute of High Security Animal Diseases (NIHSAD) had confirmed on December 30 that the samples were found positive for H5 strain of avian influenza virus. The state government was intimated about the results immediately.

“On the directions of the Centre, the Karnataka government has notified the outbreak and initiated the control and containment operations,” it said.

A central team comprising two experts has been deputed to Bengaluru for overseeing the operation and to assist the state government, it added.