New Delhi: Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal has demanded a ban on all flights coming from the United Kingdom (UK) amid fears over a highly infectious new mutant strain of the novel coronavirus which has been discovered in Britain. “New mutation of coronavirus has emerged in UK, which is a super-spreader. I urge central govt to ban all flights from the UK immediately”, tweeted Kejriwal, after several countries suspended flights departing from or arriving in the country. Also Read - India's Vaccine Drive From Tomorrow: Health Ministry Lays Guidelines, Precautions | Check Details Here
Echoing similar remarks, Rajashthan CM Ashok Gehlot asked the Narendra Modi-led government to take prompt action and prepare a contingency plan to contain the same.
“The new strain of novel coronavirus emerging in the UK is a matter of great concern. Government of India must take prompt action, prepare a contingency plan to contain the same & also immediately ban all flights from the UK and other European countries”, Gehlot wrote on Twitter.
“When coronavirus had started spreading, we were late in banning international flights, which had led to a drastic spike in cases. India needs both a preparedness plan as well as steps to restrict any movement from affected country or countries.Our medical experts must be ready with a treatment plan in case of any outbreak of the new strain of the virus. Health protocols must be adhered to even more strictly”, he added.
Meanwhile, the Union Health Ministry has called an urgent meeting of its Joint Monitoring Group on Monday to discuss the emergence of a mutated variant of the coronavirus in the UK. The meeting will be attended by the experts from AIIMS and the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR), along with a representative from the World Health Organisation (WHO).
Earlier on Saturday, UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson had announced the new rules at a briefing from 10 Downing Street, which means a planned five-day Christmas bubble of relaxed rules has been canceled in favour of a new Tier 4 level to the current three-tier lockdown system to try and control the surge in infections being caused by the new mutation of the deadly virus.
“It seems that the spread is now being driven by the new variant of the virus, Johnson said. We have alerted the World Health Organisation and are continuing to analyse the available data to improve our understanding, said Professor Chris Whitty, the Chief Medical Officer for England.