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HIGHLIGHTS:

  • Two individuals from Karnataka have already tested positive for the Omicron variant
  • Niti Aayog member Dr. VK Paul said that international flights will restart only after the situation is monitored carefully
  • The Centre has made negative RT-PCR test mandatory for travellers arriving from countries identified as ‘at-risk’

Today, amid fears of the new ‘variant of concern’, Omicron, two individuals from Karnataka have already tested positive for the Omicron variant. The news has been confirmed by Lav Agarwal, Joint Secretary of the Union Health Ministry.

Talking to the media, Lav Agarwal mentioned that all primary contacts and secondary contacts of both the cases have been traced and are being tested. The variant, Omicron which was first detected in South Africa, has spread over to 29 countries. In the press conference, Niti Aayog member Dr. VK Paul spoke about the reopening of international flights, where he informed that the decision will be taken only after the situation is monitored carefully. “It’s an ongoing discussion within our technical and scientific circles,” he added. From December 15, the Centre was likely to restart the commercial international flights.

Meanwhile, to control the situation, the Centre has already implemented strict measures for international travellers. According to the new protocols, the Centre has made a negative RT-PCR test mandatory for travellers arriving from countries identified as ‘at-risk’. All the states have already been instructed to increase the testing.

As of Thursday, India recorded 9,765 fresh COVID-19 cases jn the last 24 hours, which took its total tally to 34.61 million.

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