Omicron: India recorded 6,822 new covid-19 cases and 200 deaths in the last 24 hours ending 8 am Tuesday. This is also the lowest single-day spike in over 18 months. Active cases stand at 95,014, the lowest in 554 days and over 10,000 people recovered on Monday. Due to the rising cases, several states have stepped up vaccination, surveillance and containment measures.
Meanwhile, three more international travellers — two Covid-19 positive and another suspected case — were admitted on Monday to the Delhi government-run Lok Nayak Hospital’s special facility for isolating and treating those infected with the new variant Omicron, officials said. “There are a total of 26 people — 19 positive cases and 7 suspected cases — in the facility at present.
Of the three international travellers who arrived today, two have been found Covid-19 positive. All three are Indians and have come from Dubai, France and the UK,” Medical Director Suresh Kumar said. Delhi reported its first case of Omicron on Sunday — a 37-year-old fully vaccinated man who arrived in Delhi from Tanzania.
With the first case of Covid cause by the Omicron variant being detected in Delhi, Health Minister Satyendar Jain said the Union government should stop flights coming from countries where the variant has been detected so far. He was reiterating the demand of Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, who has appealed to the Prime Minister on two occasions in the past, asking that flight from these countries be stopped to make sure the new variant does not spread in the country.
At present, passengers from Europe as well as 10 other countries have been tagged as ‘at risk’ by the Indian government. These include South Africa, Brazil, Botswana, China, Mauritius, New Zealand, Singapore, and Israel. Passengers arriving from these countries have to mandatorily get tested at the airport and wait for the results.
The Indian Medical Association (IMA) today urged the government to announce “additional” doses of Covid vaccine for healthcare, frontline workers, and immune-compromised individuals amid concerns over Omicron, 21 cases of which have been detected in India so far. The doctors’ body said that cases of the latest variant of coronavirus were reported from a number of major states of India, and the tally, which is in double digits, is bound to increase.
The IMA stressed in a press release said, Omicron has proved to be less potent in causing severe infections but definitely five to 10 times more contagious than the Delta variant. Hence, the government and all stakeholders should take proper steps to control the contagion by enhancing immunisation.