Bengal Minister diagnosed with swine flu

Kolkata: Ailing West Bengal Water Resources minister Nandagopal Bhattacharya has been diagnosed with swineflu, while six others were admitted for the same disease to the state-run Infectious Diseases hospital.

Bhattacharya's swabs had tested positive for the H1N1 influenza, Health minister Suryakanta Mishra said, adding the minister has already been admitted to a city clinic with brain haemorrhage and respiratory distress.

"Nandagopal Bhattacharya has been affected by swineflu," Mishra said.

The minister's office at state secretariat Writers' Buildings said that Bhattacharya, whose condition was already critical, had lately been diagnosed suffering from swineflu.

"His swab was tested positive by the National Institute of Cholera and Enteric Diseases (NICED)," his office said. "Bhattacharya's swabs have been sent to NICED for a second- time confirmation."

Six swineflu patients came at the isolation ward of the hospital in last few days and their swabs were tested positive by the NICED laboratory, health department sources said.

None of them, however, was reported to have arrived from any foreign country.

A 100-bed isolation ward has been set up at the ID hospital, they added.