A man who recently returned from China was found positive for COVID-19 during screening at the Taj Mahal in Agra on Sunday. This was informed by Chief Medical Officer (CMO) Agra Dr. Arun Kumar Srivastava said.
The sample has been sent to Lucknow for genome sequencing to know the variant.
"Today a corona patient has also been found in Agra who returned from China a few days back. The sample has been sent to Lucknow for genome sequencing. Genome sequencing is important because he came from China. He landed on December 22 in India and on December 23 he reached Agra. We are trying to trace his contacts. The person has not come in contact with many people as he was in his room most of the time since his arrival," said Dr Srivastava.
In view of the COVID-19 surge in several countries, an alert has been issued in India too.
Meanwhile, testing has been ramped up at the Agra railway station, bus stands and airport following the Centre's guidelines amid a massive surge in Covid cases in several countries including China.
Health authorities in Agra have begun screening visitors at the Taj Mahal and other monuments in wake of the new Covid scare, focusing their efforts mainly on foreign tourists.
Domestic and foreign tourists come every day in large numbers to visit the Taj Mahal in Agra. Keeping the situation in mind, they will have to undergo a Covid test before their visit as per the official sources.
Anil Satsangi, the District Health Information Officer (Agra) had said, "The health department has already started the tests to prevent the spread of infection. As the alert is on, the tests have now been made mandatory for all the visitors."
On the occasion of Christmas and Sunday, a large number of tourists thronged the Taj Mahal.
Due to a large number of tourists, lines formed at the gate of the Taj and because of this the health workers posted there had difficulty in monitoring and sampling.
Meanwhile, India on Sunday recorded 227 new COVID cases in the last 24 hours, informed the Ministry of Health and Family Affairs.
The Union Ministry of Health and Family Welfare on Saturday decided to hold mock drills at all health facilities across the country on December 27 in the wake of the COVID alarm due to a surge in infection in many countries.
This is to ensure readiness in the availability of oxygen support, and ICU beds among other preparedness measures in case of a surge in COVID cases in India.
According to the Ministry, the objective of the exercise is to ensure the operational readiness of these health facilities for the management of COVID.
Detailing the focus on the parameters during the mock drills, it said that the main focus will be on the bed capacities including isolation, oxygen-supported and ICU beds at the health facilities.
The entire country is gearing up for a possible fourth wave of Covid-19, with the new Omicron sub-variant BF.7, which is said to be the reason behind the surge in Covid cases in China, being detected in India.
(with inputs from ANI)