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Foreign Affairs

New Covid strain found in the UK, Health Ministry calls up for an urgent meeting

New Delhi: The United Kingdom announced a surprise lockdown on Saturday in London and parts of the country due to the surge in the cases of the coronavirus disease after the discovery of a new strain of the Sars-CoV-2 virus, which causes Covid-19. The first mutation in the covid-19 strain was observed in September 2020 and it is believed to be 70% more infectious than the previous strain.

Several European Union nations and Canada have banned travel from the UK, and others were considering similar action to block the new strain of coronavirus which has been moving across southern England. Along with this France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Belgium, Austria, Ireland, and Bulgaria all have announced restrictions on UK travel.

Amidst the panic that has been created due to mutations in the Covid strain, chief minister of Delhi Arvind Kejriwal urged the center to ban all the flights from the UK to ensure the safety of citizens. He tweeted, “New mutation of coronavirus has emerged in the UK, which is a super-spreader. I urge the central government to ban all flights from the UK immediately.”

Today, the Union Health Ministry has called up an urgent meeting of its joint monitoring group to discuss the mutated variant of Coronavirus. Union Health Minister Dr. Harsh Vardhan said that the Central Government is “alert” and are closely keeping an eye on each development about the discovery of the new strain of coronavirus in the United Kingdom. He added that the government had done everything important to handle the Covid-19 situation in the last one year and will continue to do so. He urged citizens of the country not to fall in perturbation, he said, “I would say this to all these imaginary situations, imaginary talks, imaginary panic… Don’t involve yourself in this”.

The country has observed an overall dip in the coronavirus cases being reported daily. Moreover, with the discoveries of vaccines being made, it was believed that life would go back to normal but with new strains arising, it will take a much longer time than expected.

Ravisha Poddar
the authorRavisha Poddar
Writer

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