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Six fresh cases take Karnataka’s Omicron tally to 14

🔴 In one institution in the Bantwal region of Dakshina Kannada district, four teenage students with no immediate record of foreign travel have been found to have been infected with the Omicron variant.

By: Express News Service | Bengaluru |
Updated: December 19, 2021 2:39:33 am
omicron, maharashtra, covid-19, Mumbai, Mumbai news, Indian express, Indian express news, Mumbai latest newsA health worker conducts testing of commuters amid fear of spread of Omicron Covid variant, in Bengaluru. (PTI)

Six more cases of the Omicron variant of coronavirus have been detected in Karnataka, taking the state’s tally to fourteen on Saturday. Of these, one is a passenger from the UK, while five others have been detected in two educational institutions in Dakshina Kannada district.

In one institution in the Bantwal region of the district, four teenage students with no immediate record of foreign travel have been found to have been infected with the Omicron variant. As many as 13 students — out of the 282 primary and secondary contacts of the four girls infected with Omicron — have tested positive for Covid, the Karnataka disease surveillance unit reported.

The state health department said it was a cluster case with the infected teenagers isolated in the hostel and all the positive samples “sent for genome sequencing”. The teenagers are unvaccinated and symptomatic with “fever, loss of taste and smell,” it said. The students, all aged 13-14 years, tested positive on November 22 before their samples were sent for genome sequencing to check for Omicron.

The fifth case, emerging out of another cluster, in that of a 19-year-old woman student at a Mangalore college. She is double vaccinated, is “asymptomatic and her vitals are stable,” the state health department said. She tested positive on December 9 and her ”travel history or contact with international travellers is being ascertained,” it said. Of her 335 primary and secondary contacts, 18 have tested positive and their samples have been sent for genome sequencing, the health department said.

A sixth person reported to have been infected by the Omicron variant is an 18-year-old, double vaccinated, international traveller from the UK who arrived with a Covid negative test report on December 10 but tested positive at the Bengaluru airport. “She is asymptomatic and her vitals are stable,” the health department said.

“If you compare it to the Delta variant, Omicron seems to be spreading more rapidly. We have to be cautious in public spaces to prevent infections,” Karnataka health minister Dr K Sudhakar said on Saturday.

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