Five new cases of mutant Covid strain in India, tally rises to 25

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New Delhi : Five new cases of the UK strain of coronavirus have been detected, taking the total number of such patients to 25. The highly infectious mutant strain, which first surfaced in the United Kingdom in September, was found to have reached India two days ago with travellers returning from the European nation.

Four of the five new cases were found by National Institute of Virology, Pune and the remaining one was sequenced in IGIB (Institute of Genomics and Integrative Biology), Delhi, the health ministry has said.

All 25 patients have been kept in isolation at designated health facilities, says a report in NDTV.

The situation has pushed up concerns over a fresh spike in the infection, which has been brought under control from a high of 97,000 cases a day. The daily surge is now hovering around 20,000 cases.

Doctors have said the UK strain of the virus is super infectious -- 70 per cent more than the existing one.

While the country temporarily banned flights from the UK on December 21, the UK strain of virus -- said to be 70 per cent more contagious -- has reached Denmark, Netherlands, Australia, Italy, Sweden, France, Spain, Switzerland, Germany, Canada, Japan, Lebanon and Singapore.