Covid-19: 1,189 samples have tested positive for variants of concern in India, says govt | India News

NEW DELHI: 1,189 samples have tested positive for variants of concern for SARS COV-2 in India, the Union health ministry said on Friday amid rising Covid-19 cases in the country.
This includes 1109 samples with UK variants; 79 samples with South African variant and 1 sample with the Brazil variant, Centre said.
The health ministry further highlighted that Indian Genomic Consortium for Covid-19 has shared the Genome Sequencing data with states multiple times from March 26, 2021 onwards
“Indian Genomic Consortium has so far processed more than 13,000 samples for Genome Sequencing. The RT PCR tests being used in India do not miss these mutations as the RTPCR tests being used in India target more than two genes,” it said.
Covid-19 has been mutating and various mutations have been found in many countries as well as in India, these include UK (17 mutations), Brazil (17 mutations), and South Africa (12 mutations) variants. These variants have higher transmissibility. The UK Variant has been found extensively in UK, all across Europe and has spread to Asia and America.
“The double mutation (2 mutations) is another variant and has been found in several countries like Australia, Belgium, Germany, Ireland, Namibia, New Zealand, Singapore, United Kingdom, USA. Higher transmissibility of this variant is not established as yet,” health ministry said.
The states/UTs have been asked to keep strict vigil and take up stringent public health measures in view of unlock provisions and new strains coming from various countries.
It said the INSACOG guidelines were shared with the states again and they were advised to send samples for genome sequencing by also providing the clinical data of positive persons.
This will enable a great epidemiological insight into the link of the surge at various places to the variants as well as enable the INSACOG to discover other variants of concern, if present in the community.
Many states, including Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and Kerala, are yet to share the data with the National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), though Punjab and Delhi have shared the information, the ministry highlighted.

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