75 UK returnees but to be traced in Karnataka: Health Minister

Bengaluru, January 4

Karnataka Health Minister K Sudhakar on Monday said that the Home Department and Bengaluru Civic Body were yet to track 75 passengers who returned from England after the new strain of Covid virus was detected two weeks ago.

Sudhakar told reporters that he was in touch with the Home Department and Bengaluru Civic Body authorities concerned to keep track of those 75 UK returnees who were missing since the campaign to detect, trace and treat was launched 10 days ago.

“This needs meticulous investigation and detection. They (Home and Bengaluru Civic Body) need more time. The government was trying to help these 75 returnees, they need to understand this,” he explained.

Answering to a question, the minister said that of these 75 returnees, three returnees had submitted addresses of their country of origin while remaining 72 returnees had given their overseas cell number. As a result the authorities are finding it difficult to locate them, he said.

“We have approached immigration authorities and they too have given details whatever we had sought. But most of these details furnished by these missing passengers are incomplete. We cannot term this as immigration authorities’ mistake, but our people are working hard to track all of those missing,” he said.

The minister claimed that only 10 were infected with a new variant virus so far in the state.

“It is not big number given the number of people who disembarked in the last one month,” he said.

Sudhakar further said that so far 34 UK returnees and 14 of their primary or secondary contacts were found to be positive for Covid-19.

“Among these 48 cases, the new strain of virus is found only in 10,” he said.

“All of them are undergoing treatment and are without any serious health condition. They will recover soon,” he said in response to a question.

“Their swab samples have been sent to the National Institute of Mental Health and Neuro-Sciences for carrying out genome sequencing and 10 among them were confirmed to be infected by the new variant of the virus,” he explained.

Notably, a total of 5,068 passengers returned to the state from England between November 25 and December 31.

“Of these 5,068 passengers, 4,238 passengers landed in Bengaluru from December 9 to 31, and among those landed 810 are from other states,” the minister had stated on Friday. IANS

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