The tally of people infected with the new strain of coronavirus first detected in the UK is on the rise in India. Four fresh cases of the new strain of coronavirus have been detected in India. Following the surge, the total tally of people who returned from the UK and were found infected with the new strain has gone up to 29.
The development has raised the concern of the Union government, especially when the daily surge in COVID-19 cases has declined to around 20,000 as compared to over 95,000 cases a day a few months back. The concern also stems from the fact that there is no clarity on whether the existing vaccines that have been developed and those under development will be effective on the new strain or not.
Notably, the UK strain of the virus has high transmissibility.
Four fresh cases of UK coronavirus strain
Of the four fresh cases detected in India, three cases were found in a lab in Karnataka’s Bengaluru, whereas the remaining case was found in a lab in Hyderabad.
Earlier on Thursday, five fresh cases were detected. Out of the five cases, four cases were found by the Pune-based National Institute of Virology and one of the cases was detected by the Delhi-based Institute of Genomics and Integrative Biology.
Taking no chance, the government has started a huge genome sequencing project involving 10 laboratories across the country. Notably, the samples of 144 people of the 33,000 passengers, who tested positive for coronavirus on their return from the UK, are being tested by these laboratories for the mutated strain.
Mutated strain of coronavirus confirmed by many countries
It is important to note that 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, the ministry said.
Notably, after the new mutated strain of the virus came to the fore, several countries have banned flight operations to and from the UK, whereas many countries have made COVID-19 test reports mandatory for passengers. India has banned flights to and from the UK till January 7.
Meanwhile, an expert panel of the Indian regulator on Friday cleared the COVID-19 vaccine developed by AstraZeneca and Oxford University. The final approval for the jab will come from the Drugs Controller General of India (DCGI).
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