Five deaths due to swine flu in Chandigarh, six new cases

Chandigarh, Dec 31 - Five more deaths due to the influenza A (H1N1) virus were reported in this union territory (UT), taking the toll to 55, officials said Thursday.

"Five deaths were reported in Chandigarh hospitals yesterday (Wednesday) evening. The deceased were identified as Chandigarh resident Rajan Kumar, 52, Ganga Ram, 65, from Bilaspur in Himachal Pradesh, Ritu Gulati, 34, from Ambala in Haryana and Lajwanti, 66, and Pooja, 20, both from towns in Punjab," H. C. Gera, UT nodal officer for swine flu, said.

He added: "Three of these people died at PGIMER (Postgraduate Institute of Medical Education and Research) while the other two deaths were reported at the government hospital in Sector 32. We have informed the health officials of other states about these deaths."

Health officials have quarantined five family members of Rajan Kumar, who stayed here in Sector 30.

Six more patients, including a doctor working at PGIMER, tested positive for swine flu. They were two from Chandigarh, three from Punjab and one from Haryana.

So far, over 800 patients have been screened for swine flu infection here, out of which over 325 tested positive.

In the month of December alone, nearly 45 deaths and over 170 positive cases of swine flu have been reported in UT hospitals. (IANS)