Coronavirus India Highlights: At least 20 passengers from the UK tested positive for COVID-19 on Tuesday as the government issued a stringent set of SOPs mandating RT-PCR tests at airports for each traveller from the country and isolation in a separate unit of an institutional facility for positive cases in view of the new coronavirus strain.
There is no need to panic but there is cause to be more vigilant, said NITI Aayog member (Health) Dr V K Paul. “We are yet to spot such a virus in our country. We will be safe if we suppress the genomic sequence,” Paul said 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.
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.
Meanwhile, India on Tuesday recorded 19,556 new Covid-19 cases, the lowest in six months, according to data from the Union Health Ministry. The total number of coronavirus cases in the country now stand at 1,00,75,116. Out of these 2.92 lakh are active while over 96.36 lakh people have recovered from the disease. With 301 fatalities in the last 24 hours, the death toll reached 1,46,111. Detection of new cases of coronavirus infections fell below 20,000 for the first time in six months. Low detection was, however, powered by a drop in testing on Sunday. Only six states reported more than 1,000 new cases on Monday.