Four hundred patients in India have been affected with three mutant variants of coronavirus first detected in the United Kingdom, South Africa and Brazil, the centre said on Thursday. As many as 158 cases were reported in the last two weeks.
Recognizing that the mutant variants of SARS-CoV-2 are driving the pandemic in countries of their origin, namely United Kingdom, South Africa and Brazil, Government of India has revised its guidelines for international travel to minimize the risk of importation and further spread of these mutant variants in India, he said.
A genomic consortium of 10 regional laboratories with National Center for Disease Control as the apex laboratory has been established to perform genomic sequencing of the samples from positive travellers and 5 per cent of the positive test samples from the community. Such international travellers who test positive are kept in special isolation ward, till such time they test negative. The contacts of such cases are also kept under institutional quarantine, till such time they test negative.
On Tuesday, the Central Government had officially said that the country is witnessing a second "peak" in coronavirus cases since 2 February, but avoided referring to it as "second wave", a term used to mark the second surge in cases.
(Credit - News18)