A total of 29 people in the country have now tested positive for the new UK variant of Covid-19, with four added to the list on Friday, the Union health ministry has said. Among them, 20 people were found positive on Tuesday and Wednesday. Five were tested positive on Thursday and four on Friday.
Among these 29 cases, eight have been detected in NCDC, New Delhi, two in IGIB New Delhi, five in NIV Pune, three in CCMB Hyderabad, 10 in NIMHANS Bengaluru and one in NIBMG Kalyani, the ministry said.
The new strain, first detected in the UK in December, has spread fresh concerns across the world with most of the countries shutting their airspace to countries where the new strain has been found. India too has stopped flights from the UK till January 7. The new strain, which is believed to be more contagious and is potent to infect young people with no other health complications, forced several states to reimpose fresh restrictions.
All UK_returned passengers have been tested and their samples are being genome sequenced by a consortium of 10 government labs under INSACOG (Indian SARS-CoV-2 Genomic Consortia) launched by the government in the wake of the new strain. People tested positive with the mutated strain are being kept in isolation in health facilities. Contact tracing is being done for co-travellers, family contacts and others.
Apart from India, countries which have reported the new variant include Denmark, the Netherlands, Australia, Italy, Sweden, France, Spain, Switzerland, Germany, Canada, Japan, Lebanon and Singapore.