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Five passengers, crew from UK test Covid-19 positive in Delhi amid new virus strain scare

Five out of 266 passengers & crew members of a flight which arrived at Delhi airport from London last night have tested positive for Covid-19. Their samples have been sent to NCDC for research & they have been sent to care centre.

India TV News Desk Edited by: India TV News Desk New Delhi Updated on: December 22, 2020 14:46 IST
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Five passengers, crew from UK test Covid-19 positive in Delhi

As many as five people out of 266 passengers and crew members of a flight have tested positive for the novel coronavirus. The flight arrived at the Delhi airport from London on Monday night. Speaking to news agency ANI, Nodal officer for Covid-19 said that their samples have been sent to the National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) for research and they have been sent to a care centre.

Soon after the new cases detected in the national capital, two passengers, who arrived from UK, tested positive for Covid-19 at Kolkata airport. READ MORE

This comes after the government on Monday announced that it has temporarily banned flights from the UK to India after the emergence of a new and highly infectious strain of the coronavirus in Britain. The suspension of flights from the UK will come into effect from Tuesday midnight and will continue till 31 December, the government said.

India has, however, not yet detected the new strain of coronavirus that has spread to some parts of the UK.

READ MORE | India suspends UK flights till Dec 31 over new strain of coronavirus

The new Covid-19 strain is feared to be more infective and could 70% more transmissible, experts in the UK noted, prompting more than 40 nations – including India – to suspend flight operations.

Italy on December 20 detected a patient infected with the new strain of the coronavirus also found in Britain, news agency ANI reported quoting the Health Ministry. The patient and his partner returned from the United Kingdom in the last few days, reports said. They reached Rome’s Fiumicino airport and were now in isolation.

Britain’s European neighbours began closing their doors to travellers from the United Kingdom on Sunday amid alarm about the rapidly spreading strain of coronavirus that has caused cases to soar there.

ALSO READ | Govt alert, no need to panic: Harsh Vardhan on new coronavirus strain in UK

On Monday, Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan said the government is alert about the new coronavirus strain in the United Kingdom and that there was no need to panic. The government had done everything that was important to handle the COVID-19 situation in the last one year, the health minister said. 

Responding to a question on the panic over the new strain and a demand to ban flights from the UK, Vardhan told reporters, "I would say this to all that all these imaginary situations, imaginary talks, imaginary panic... don't involve yourself in this." 

"The government is fully conscious about everything. If you ask me, there is no reason to panic the way we are seeing in this press conference," the minister added. 

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