India's Omicron count crosses 150

India's Omicron Covid count rose to 153 on Sunday after Maharashtra reported six and Gujarat logged four more cases of the new variant of coronavirus, respectively

India's Omicron count crosses 150
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PTI

India's Omicron Covid count rose to 153 on Sunday after Maharashtra reported six and Gujarat logged four more cases of the new variant of coronavirus, respectively.

According to central and state officials, omicron cases have been detected in 11 states and union territories -- Maharashtra (54), Delhi (22), Rajasthan (17) and Karnataka (14), Telangana (20), Gujarat (11), Kerala (11), Andhra Pradesh (1), Chandigarh (1), Tamil Nadu (1) and West Bengal (1).

Six persons tested positive for the Omicron variant of coronavirus in Maharashtra on Sunday, raising the state's tally of such cases to 54, the health department said.

While two of these patients had a history of travel to Tanzania, two others had returned from England and one from the Middle East. All five of them are fully vaccinated.

Another patient is a five-year-old boy from Junnar in Pune who is a close contact of Dubai travellers from Junnar, it said in a statement.

"Total six cases were diagnosed today - four of them found during the airport screening in Mumbai. One of these four patients is from Mumbai, two from Karnataka and one from Aurangabad," it said.

Out of 54 cases in the state, 22 have been found in Mumbai.


In Gujarat, a 45-year-old NRI and a teenage boy who came from the UK, a Surat-based woman who had recently visited Dubai and a Tanzanian national are the new patients of the Omicron variant.

The non-resident Indian tested positive for the coronavirus infection in the RT-PCR test carried out at the Ahmedabad international airport soon after he arrived from the UK on December 15, a health department official said on Sunday.

"The man's sample was later found infected with the Omicron variant," Anand district health officer Dr M T Chhari said.

He was scheduled to reach the state's Anand city from Ahmedabad.

"But, after he tested positive for the coronavirus, he was taken to the Ahmedabad civil hospital from the airport. The patient is currently recovering at the Ahmedabad civil hospital," Dr Chhari said.

His co-passengers and other contacts have tested negative for the viral infection, the official said.

A 15-year-old boy from Gandhinagar was also detected with the Omicron variant after returning from the UK, Gandhinagar Municipal Commissioner Dhaval Patel said.

The Tanzania national, who arrived at Ahmedabad via Zanzibar and Dar-es-Salaam, was found negative in the RT-PCR test carried out at the airport. However, when he was tested again upon reaching Rajkot, he was found positive on December 15, said Rajkot collector Arun Mahesh Babu.

"Genomic sequencing of his sample on Sunday confirmed him to be infected with the Omicron variant," he said.

The woman from Surat had gone to Dubai with her two sons and returned on December 5. On December 13, while on her way back to Dubai, she tested positive for COVID-19 in an RT-PCR test carried out at the Surat airport, health officials said.

All her contacts, including her son and daughter, have tested negative for the virus, the official said.

On Saturday, Maharashtra had reported eight more cases, Telangana's tally jumped from eight to 20, while Karnataka and Kerala reported six and four cases respectively.

Of the six cases reported in Karnataka on Saturday, one was a passenger from the UK, while five others were from COVID-19 clusters in two educational institutions in Dakshina Kannada district, officials had said.

While Omicron was first reported in South Africa on November 24, India's first two cases of the this heavily mutated version of the coronavirus were detected in Karnataka on December 2.

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