West Bengal has reported its first case of a mutant coronavirus strain that surfaced in the United Kingdom, a senior health official said on Wednesday.
The patient, son of an official of a medical college, tested positive for the new mutated strain after returning from the UK, he added.
The patient was under treatment at a government isolation facility in the city after being tested positive for COVID-19 at the Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose International Airport upon his return to Kolkata 10 days ago.
His sample was further tested for the new strain. “The new strain of the coronavirus was detected during his genetic analysis. We have sent the report to Delhi-based National Centre for Disease Control,” the official said.
The state health secretary is monitoring the situation closely and will be holding a meeting with the health department to discuss the current situation at hand ahead of New Year celebrations.
Twenty cases of the mutant coronavirus strain have so far been reported across the country. Earlier the UK health official announced that the country has identified a new variant of Coronavirus that spreads faster than the other strains.
More than 40 countries including India have banned travel to and from the UK, a move several researchers said was necessary in the view of the rapid spread of the new strain, which was first detected on September 21.