At least 20 passengers from the United Kingdom have been tested positive for Covid-19 even as the Centre has issued a set of SOPs including mandatory RT-PCR test for each traveller from UK at airport and isolation in a separate unit of institutional facility for positive cases.
These passengers have been tested positive at various airports including Delhi, Chennai and Kolkata. Taking precautionary measures to let not spread the infection further from these passengers, the state governments have initiated vigorous contact tracking of such passengers who came from UK or other European countries in the past 10 days.
The Health Ministry also issued Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) for passengers who have travelled from or transited through the UK in the past four weeks. Compulsory RT-PCR tests on arrival, separate isolation of those testing positive for the new variant of coronavirus and institutional quarantine for co-passengers of those testing positive are some of the requirements mentioned by the Centre to the states, a Indian express report said.
“We are yet to spot such a virus in our country. We will be safe if we suppress the genomic sequence,” NITI Aayog member (Health) Dr V K Paul was quoted saying by the report. He made the statement at a press conference while stressing that the mutated SARS-CoV-2 strain detected in the UK has no impact on the potential of emerging vaccines.
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Earlier, the British government had flagged warning about emergence of a new mutant version having 70 percent more virulent than existing one. Many European countries stopped flight from UK as a safety measure. India too announced the suspension of all flights to and from the UK between December 23 and December 31 to prevent the arrival of the new Covid-19 strain.