Third Covid wave inevitable, says govt’s principal scientific adviser

Principal Scientific Adviser to Centre K VijayRaghavan on Wednesday said that the “third phase” of the COVID-19 is inevitable.

VijayRaghavan, while briefing the media personnel over the COVID-19 situation in the country said, “Variants are transmitted same as original strain. It does not have the properties of new kinds of transmission. It infects humans in a manner that makes it more transmissible as it gains entry, makes more copies and goes on, same as the original.”

“A phase three is inevitable, given the higher levels of circulating virus but it is not clear on what time scale this phase three will occur. We should prepare for new waves,” the Principal Scientific Adviser said.

“Previous infection and vaccine will cause an adaptive treasure on the virus, a new kind of changes that will escape. Therefore, we should be prepared scientifically to take care of that,” he said.

VijayRaghavan further said, “Vaccines are effective against current variants. New variants will arise all over the world and in India too but variants that increase transmission will likely plateau. Immune evasive variants and those which lower or increase disease severity will arise going ahead.”

“Scientists of India and all over the world are working to anticipate these kinds of variants and act against them rapidly by early warning and developing modified tools. It is an intense research program, happening in India and abroad,” he added.

During the media briefing, Joint Secretary of Union Health Ministry Lav Agarwal informed that 12 states have more than 1 lakh active cases, 7 states have 50,000 to 1 lakh active cases, and 17 states have less than 50,000 active cases.

“Maharashtra, Kerala, Karnataka, Uttar Pradesh, and Andhra Pradesh have around 1.5 lakh active cases,” Agarwal said.

“There are some areas of concern. Bengaluru reported around 1.49 lakh cases in the last one week. Chennai reported 38,000 cases. Some districts have recorded further and speedy COVID cases, which include Kozhikode, Ernakulam, Gurugram,” the Joint Secretary said.

He further said that around 2.4 per cent day-on-day growth in COVID cases has been noticed.

“An increase in deaths has been noticed too. Maharashtra, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Delhi, and Haryana reported more death cases,” he added.

(Only the headline and picture of this report may have been reworked by the Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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