India health minister: Don’t panic over new UK coronavirus strain

December 22, 2020
India health minister: Don’t panic over new UK coronavirus strain

An Indian health minister has advised against panicking over a new virulent strain of the coronavirus which was recently identified in Britain. India, which has the second-highest number of cases after the US, does not currently mandate institutional quarantine for international travellers if they have a negative COVID-19 test result 72 hours before entering India.However, local health authorities remain vigilant as they monitor the new strain.

“If you ask me, there is no reason for such panic [so] don’t entangle yourself in this imaginary situation, imaginary talk, imaginary panic,” India’s Health Minister Harsh Vardhan said.

A government committee met on Monday to discuss the new strain, but it is unclear whether India would halt flights to Britain, one of 23 countries that it shares an “air bubble” with.

An Indian health minister has advised against panicking over a new virulent strain of the coronavirus which was recently identified in Britain. India, which has the second-highest number of cases after the US, does not currently mandate institutional quarantine for international travellers if they have a negative COVID-19 test result 72 hours before entering India.However, local health authorities remain vigilant as they monitor the new strain.

“If you ask me, there is no reason for such panic [so] don’t entangle yourself in this imaginary situation, imaginary talk, imaginary panic,” India’s Health Minister Harsh Vardhan said.

A government committee met on Monday to discuss the new strain, but it is unclear whether India would halt flights to Britain, one of 23 countries that it shares an “air bubble” with.

The new strain could be up to 70% more infectious, according to the UK – it has prompted European nations and several others to close their doors to travellers from the country. No Asian country has reported the new strain even as it battles surges in coronavirus cases over the past few weeks. The spikes in cases have prompted localised lockdowns in some countries and more aggressive testing.

The new strain could be up to 70% more infectious, according to the UK – it has prompted European nations and several others to close their doors to travellers from the country. No Asian country has reported the new strain even as it battles surges in coronavirus cases over the past few weeks. The spikes in cases have prompted localised lockdowns in some countries and more aggressive testing.

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