India's Covid-19 Cases Surge, New Variant JN.1 Detected in Kerala

India's Covid-19 Cases Surge, New Variant JN.1 Detected in Kerala

On Monday, the active caseload of Covid-19 in India saw an increase, reaching 1,828, with one recorded death in the state of Kerala, where the recently identified Covid sub-variant JN.1 was detected, as per data from the Union Health Ministry.

The number of individuals recovering from the infection has risen to 4.46 crore (4,44,69,931), resulting in a national recovery rate of 98.81 percent, according to the Health Ministry.

The Covid-19 related death toll in the country has reached 5,33,317, with a case fatality rate of 1.19 percent. The Health Ministry's website indicates that a total of 220.67 crore doses of the Covid-19 vaccine have been administered in India.

On Sunday, the country reported 335 new Covid-19 infections, causing the number of active cases to rise to 1,701. Five deaths were recorded, with four in Kerala and one in Uttar Pradesh, according to Health Ministry data.

Concerns have arisen about the emergence of the Covid sub-variant JN.1 in Kerala. The variant was detected in a 79-year-old woman during routine surveillance by the Indian SARS-CoV-2 Genomics Consortium (INSACOG). The woman, from Thiruvananthapuram district, tested positive in an RT-PCR sample on December 8, with the sample having been taken on November 18. The individual experienced mild symptoms of Influenza Like Illness (ILI) and has since recovered.

Kerala's Health Minister, Veena George, reassured the public, stating that the sub-variant JN.1 was not a cause for concern. She explained that the variant had been identified months ago in Indian passengers screened at the Singapore airport. Emphasizing that there was no need for alarm, she mentioned that Kerala had identified the variant through genome sequencing and that the situation was being closely monitored. However, she urged people, especially those with comorbidities, to remain cautious.

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