India fights back latest Covid-19 threat: Check the latest updates
On Friday morning, Union Health Ministry data showed that the country logged 163 new coronavirus infections. Union Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya will chair a meeting with the health ministers of the states and Union territories at 3 pm.
With an increasing number of Covid-19 cases emerging from several parts of the world, India is adopting all necessary precautionary measures to prevent a new outbreak. On Friday morning, Union Health Ministry data showed that the country logged 163 new coronavirus infections. Active cases declined to 3,380. The Covid case tally was recorded at 4.46 crore (4,46,76,678), while the number of people who have recuperated surged to 4,41,42,608
Here are the latest updates about the latest Coronavirus threat
IMA advice: Avoid public gatherings
The Indian Medical Association has urged people to avoid public gatherings such as wedding ceremonies, social and political meetings and international travel amid a spike in COVID-19 cases in some countries, including China. In an advisory on Thursday, the IMA appealed to people to vaccinate against the viral disease, including taking the precautionary dose and following Covid-appropriate behaviour such as using masks in public places and maintaining social distancing. While advising regular handwashing with sanitiser or soap, the IMA asked people to consult doctors in case of symptoms like fever, sore throat, cough and loose motion.
'BF.7 variant not worrisome for India'
A prominent scientist has said that the BF.7 variant of Coronavirus is a sub-variant of the Omicron strain and that India need not worry too much about its severity on the population. Rakesh Mishra, Director of Tata Institute for Genetics and Society (TIGS) in Bangalore, told news agency PTI, 'The key features will be like Omicron sub-variant. There is no big difference, barring some small changes. Most of us have gone through the Omicron wave. So we don't have to worry about it. Essentially, it is the same virus." However, the former director of CSIR-Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology cautioned that wearing face masks and avoiding unnecessary crowds is always advisable.
Mandaviya to meet state health ministers
Union Health Minister Mansukh Mandaviya will chair a meeting with the health ministers of the states and Union territories on Friday. The health minister said that the focus is to ensure that no new virus variant enters the country.
PM Modi: Do not be complacent
Prime Minister Narendra Modi has cautioned against complacency. At the same time, he urged people to wear masks at crowded places. The Prime Minister has sought to strengthen ongoing surveillance measures, especially at international airports. "Covid is not over yet," PM Modi said while chairing a high-level meeting to review the situation.
Maharashtra to test international passengers
The Maharashtra health department has said that 2 per cent of the international passengers arriving at the state's airports will be randomly tested. The state government has not made masks mandatory for people but has advised their use by elderly persons and high-risk populations. The state health department has directed district administrations and civic bodies have been asked to ramp up testing and every positive RT-PCR swab sample should be sent for genome sequencing to detect any new variant.
Random Covid testing at Delhi airport from December 24
Two per cent of passengers arriving in each international flight will be randomly tested for Coronavirus from December 24. If anybody is tested positive following random testing, the sample should be sent for genomic testing at the designated INSACOG laboratory network. The concerned testing laboratory shall share a copy of the positive report with Integrated Disease Surveillance Programme at firstname.lastname@example.org and with the concerned state or Union Territory for further follow-up action.