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Nine deaths takes India's swine flu toll to 125
NEW DELHI/BANGALORE: Nine people, including six in Karnataka, died of swine flu in India Saturday, taking the country's toll from the infectious influenza A (H1N1) virus to 125, health authorities said.

The death toll in Karnataka has gone up to 41, second only to Maharashtra, which has seen 59 deaths.

"Six people have died of swine flu in our state during last 24 hours. While five deaths were confirmed late last night, one death was reported today afternoon. All of them had other health complications and also found positive for H1N1," Karnataka state surveillance officer Vasudev Murthi told IANS.

Murthi, who is also one of the nodal officers in charge of controlling swine flu in the state, said: "So far the cumulative death toll due to H1N1 in our state is 41."

He said the latest death in the state was that of a 38-year-old woman.

One death was reported from Maharashtra and two from Andhra Pradesh, where the toll has reached four, officials said.

In Andhra Pradesh, Rupa Devi, 38, who was admitted to the government-run Chest Hospital a week ago, succumbed to the virus Saturday. The woman, a resident of Bholakpur area in Hyderabad, was brought to the hospital after she did not get any relief from fever at two hospitals.

Another woman, identified as Lakshmi Devi of Kadapa town, died at a private hospital, where she was admitted Aug 25.

The details about the Maharashtra death are not yet known.

The health ministry said 157 people tested positive for H1N1 Saturday, taking the total number of people affected in the country to 4,645 so far. Delhi reported 52 cases, Karnataka 16, Maharashtra 45, Tamil Nadu 28 and Uttar Pradesh six.

Meanwhile, the Karnataka health department did not divulge details of those who died of the flu or the name of the hospitals where they died.

"The step has been taken to avert any sort of panic spread among people due to swine flu. We're only following the guidelines issued by the central health ministry not to reveal the names of H1N1 victims," Principal Secretary (Health) IR Perumal told.

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