New Delhi, Dec 29 (PTI) Seven people who recently arrived in Delhi from the UK and tested positive for COVID-19 have been found infected with the new strain of coronavirus, officials said on Thursday.
Interacting with reporters earlier in the day, Delhi Health Minister Satyendar Jain said a total of 38 people have been found positive since coming to Delhi from the UK recently, and kept in a separate institutional isolation unit on the LNJP Hospital premises.
'Four such patients have been found infected with the new UK strain of COVID-19. The persons who came in their contact have been also traced and tested, and its not in them. So, only these four cases of new strain in Delhi so far,' he said.
'Flights have been stopped and those who came before that are being traced and tested rigorously,' he added.
A senior official in the evening said a total of seven people who have recently arrived in Delhi from the UK have been found infected with the new strain of COVID-19.
'Four of these have their addresses in Delhi, while rest are from other places,' he said.
Delhi recorded 677 COVID-19 cases and 21 new fatalities on Wednesday, even as the positivity rate dropped to 0.8 per cent, authorities said.
'Positivity rate has dropped to 0.8 per cent from 15.26 per cent on November 7. About 85 per cent beds are vacant, so the situation has improved a lot. And, so, it had been decided to make LNJP Hospital and GTB Hospital, into partial COVID-19 facilities now. All services, including the OPD will be soon resumed gradually,' Jain said.
A formal order was issued on Thursday to make seven hospitals, partially COVID-19 facilities, including LNJP Hospital.
On the preparedness for the vaccination, he said, work is on to set up 1,000 vaccination centres.
'Also, so far we are aware that the vaccines will be made available freely by the central government,' he said.
Jain said night curfew has been imposed in the city as the situation is under control right now, but huge gatherings could spell trouble again.
The Delhi government has imposed curfew from 11 pm to 6 am on December 31 and January 1 to avoid large gatherings during New Year celebrations due to COVID-19 and its highly transmissible UK strain.
A formal order stated that not more than five people will be allowed to assemble at public places in Delhi during night curfew to avoid large gatherings in view of COVID-19.
On COVID-biowaste generation, he said, it is the responsibility of the civic bodies and they are doing it.
On the closure of Covid Care Centre at CWG Village area, Jain said, it did not see any patients for quite some time, so it was closed.
Amid mounting concerns over the new variant of the COVID-19, the Delhi government had earlier said that people who had arrived here recently from that country, are being traced and tested, while an institutional quarantine facility has been set up separately for positive cases at the LNJP Hospital. PTI KND AAR AAR