Chennai: Amidst scare of new virus strain, man travelling from UK tests COVID-19 positive

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Chennai: In a worrying sign for the Tamil Nadu administration, a man who recently returned from the United Kingdom tested positive for COVID-19 in Chennai on Tuesday.

It should be noted that the United Kingdom has been witnessing a new strain of COVID-19 from the past couple of days, forcing many countries to halt flights to and from the European nation.

According to reports, the passenger has recently returned from the UK and travelled to Chennai via Delhi.

He has been admitted to Kings Institute and put under institutional quarantine. The authorities have launched contact tracing and trying to contain the situation.

Importantly, his sample has been sent to the National Institute Of Virology in Pune to identify whether the patient is infected by the new strain of COVID-19.

Meanwhile, Tamil Nadu Health Secretary J Radhakrishnan has said the state administration is rigorously checking and monitoring international passengers coming into the country.

“We are testing for COVID-19 passengers of flights originating or halting in the UK. One such passenger tested positive yesterday. It’s incorrect to presume that he is infected with UK variant of COVID. We will send his samples to NIV, Pune,” said Radhakrishnan.

“We are also identifying the people who travelled to the UK in the last 10 days and ensuring they all test negative in RT-PCR testing,” he added.

The Indian government has suspended flights to London while Saudi and Oman have suspended all international flights.

All those who arrive from London will have to go a mandatory RT-PCR test and will have to remain in institutional quarantine till test results arrive in Chennai.

The Tamil Nadu govt has decided to test all the people who have returned from the UK in the past 15 days.

Till now, people arriving in Chennai with COVID negative certificates were being exempted from tests and quarantine. However, it has been changed now by the administration.

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