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New COVID-19 strain has 17 changes but doesn't increase severity: Govt
NITI Aayog's VK Paul on Tuesday confirmed that no new COVID-19 strain case has been found in India so far.
Amid the ongoing COVID-19 crisis, a new virus variant has been reported in the United Kingdom (UK), that has also been detected in countries like South Africa, Australia, Brazil and Denmark.
In view of this, the Indian government has also taken several measures to contain the spread of the virus. The centre has already suspended all flights from and to the UK from December 22 to December 31. They have also issued a new Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) for the air travellers coming from the United Kingdom as all the passengers coming from the UK will have to share their travel history for the last 14 days.
As per the recent reports, over 20 UK returnees have tested positive for COVID-19. Six of them were on a flight that landed in the national capital at 11.30 pm on Monday, two on a flight that came into Kolkata on Sunday night, four that arrived in Ahmedabad on Tuesday and eight, including a crew member, in Amritsar who reached on Tuesday.
Notably, all were direct Air India flights from the UK's capital London.
However, NITI Aayog's VK Paul on Tuesday confirmed that no new COVID-19 strain case has been found in India so far.
"To the best of our knowledge, we have yet to spot such a virus in our country, for which intensive efforts are in the offing," Paul said.
Paul added that the new virus strain would have no impact on vaccine development.
He stated, "As of our understanding today, it has no impact on the potential of the emerging vaccines that are being developed in our country."
Paul also said that the new strain of COVID-19 in the UK has increased transmissibility and this mutation is not affecting the severity of the disease and case fatality is not affected by this mutation.