New Delhi: Union Health Ministry on Tuesday (December 29) said that a total of 6 samples of 6 UK returnee persons have been found to be positive with the new variant of coronavirus.
The Ministry said that 3 samples were found positive for the new COVID-19 strain at NIMHANS in Bengaluru, 2 in CCMB, Hyderabad and 1 in NIV, Pune. “All these persons have been kept in single room isolation in designated Health Care facilities by respective State Governments.
Their close contacts have also been put under quarantine. Comprehensive contact tracing has been initiated for co-travellers, family contacts and others. Genome sequencing on other specimens is going on,” the Ministry said in a statement. From 25th November to 23rd December 2020 midnight, about 33,000 passengers disembarked at various Indian airports from UK.
All these passengers are being tracked and subjected by States/UTs to RT-PCR tests. So far only 114 have been found positive. These positive samples have been sent to 10 INSACOG labs (NIBMG Kolkata, ILS Bhubaneswar, NIV Pune, CCS Pune, CCMB Hyderabad, CDFD Hyderabad, InSTEM Bengaluru, NIMHANS Bengaluru, IGIB Delhi, NCDC Delhi) for genome sequencing,” added the statement.
The Union Health Ministry noted that government officials are closely monitoring the situation and regular advice is being provided to the states for enhanced surveillance, containment, testing and dispatch of samples to INSACOG labs.
The discovery of new COVID-19 strain in the United Kingdom has led to fear and panic across the globe with many countries taking strict measures to stop the spread of the new strain of coronavirus.
Notably, the presence of the new UK Variant has already been reported by Denmark, Netherlands, Australia, Italy, Sweden, France, Spain, Switzerland, Germany, Canada, Japan, Lebanon and Singapore, so far.