Delta variant of Covid-19 found in Meghalaya

Correspondent/Agencies SHILLONG, JUN 10 | Publish Date: 6/10/2021 12:54:58 PM IST

The highly infectious ‘Delta’ variant of the Coronavirus has been detected in Meghalaya, chief minister Conrad K Sangma said on Thursday. 

“We are seeing that the situation is different in different districts and now we are definitely seeing after doing the genome sequence of a large number of samples that this is more of a delta variant that we have which is a very highly infectious and high spreading variant,” he said. 

“Therefore, we have seen the spread that is taking place throughout the state.  We have seen three districts like West Garo Hills, West Jaintia Hills-- which has crossed and touched about 70-80 cases on an average in the last few days,” Sangma said. 

He said that the Covid cases again crossed 600 on Thursday while recoveries have been less than 500.

“We will have to observe in the next few days and see how the strategy goes and make sure that the rural areas and rural infrastructures are also equally prepared for the situation,” the Chief Minister said. 

On the ongoing lock-down, he said, “We will see tomorrow how it goes and seeing the trend and seeing the reports that we get from the deputy commissioners, will take a call tomorrow on how we move forward...” 

What is delta variatn: Delta variant, also known as B.1.617.2, is a so-called variant of concern like others we have seen before including “alpha”(first found in the UK), “beta” (first identified in South Africa) and “gamma” (discovered in Brazil). 

Two factors set delta apart and make it potentially the most dangerous to date: First, it has about a 40% higher transmission rate compared with alpha, which already had a 50% higher transmissibility than the original strain of the virus.

A preliminary study conducted by the All India Institute of Medical Science (AIIMS) Delhi claimed that the presence of Delta variant (B1.617.2) is predominantly found even after getting a single dose or both doses of COVID-19 vaccine.

The study included 63 people who got breakthrough infections; of which 36 patients received two doses, while 27 had received one dose of vaccine.

The B.1.617.2 lineage was first described in India and associated with increased transmissibility as well as immune escape and has grown to become one of the predominant lineages in India,” the study said.

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