New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi is chairing a meeting with top government officials on the COVID-19 situation and vaccination in New Delhi today. Cabinet Secretary Rajiv Gauba, Principal Secretary to Prime Minister, P. K. Mishra, Union Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan and NITI Aayog Member (Health) Dr V. K. Paul are among the attendees.

The meeting assumes significance in the wake of rising concerns over a new COVID variant Omicron, first detected in South Africa. India has added several countries to the list from where travellers will require to follow additional measures on arrival in India, including post-arrival testing for infection.

Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has added Hong Kong and Israel to the list of countries from where

travellers would need to follow additional measures on arrival in India. Other countries on the list include South Africa, Brazil, Bangladesh, Botswana, China, Mauritius, New Zealand, Zimbabwe, Singapore and UK.

The Centre had on Thursday cautioned States and Union Territories against the new variant. Union Health Secretary had written to Additional Chief Secretaries or Principal Secretaries or Secretaries (Health) of all States and UTs, saying multiple cases of new Corona variant have been reported in the three countries. The Centre had asked all States and Union territories to conduct rigorous screening and testing of all international travellers coming from or transiting through South Africa, Hong Kong and Botswana.

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