Bhubaneswar: Odisha government on Friday announced that the newly discovered COVID-19 mutant strain has not been found among the travellers who returned to the State from United Kingdom in the past one month.
Additional Chief Secretary (Health Department). PK Mohapatra today said that all the UK returnees to the State have been traced and the swab samples of ones who tested positive for COVID-19 were sent to various laboratories for genome sequencing.
“No mutant strain of COVID-19 was detected from genome sequencing of the swab samples of the UK returnees so far in Odisha,” said Mohapatra.
Almost all the UK returnees to the State have been identified. Samples of all those who were tested positive for #Covid19 were sent for genome sequencing. But none of them have new mutant strain: #Odisha Health Dept Additional Chief Secretary PK Mohapatra
— OTV (@otvnews) January 1, 2021
State Health department officials informed that by Thursday, around 204 swab samples were collected from UK returnees and their contacts were sent for testing as per the protocols.
The new mutant COVID strain was not detected in any of the samples. It may be noted here that only 7 UK returnees have tested positive for Covid-19 so far in the State.
The development assumes much significance as the new mutant strain of Covid-19 is believed to be more contagious. The mutant strain was first detected in the UK in September last year.
Following the detection of the mutant strain, the India government had ordered stoppage of international flights to and from UK.
(Edited By Suryakant Jena)