23rd January 2022 – (New Delhi) India’s medical authority said on Sunday that the Omicron variant of COVID-19 is currently in the community transmission stage in the South Asian country and has become dominant in cities where new cases have been increasing exponentially.
“Omicron is now in community transmission in India and has become dominant in multiple metros, where new cases have been rising exponentially,” said Indian SARS-CoV-2 Consortium on Genomics (INSACOG) which studies various variants of COVID-19 and their genome sequencings.
The INSACOG said most cases with the Omicron variant so far have been asymptomatic or mild. However, it said, hospitalizations and intensive care unit (ICU) cases have been increasing in the current wave of infections.
“The threat level remains unchanged … There is no evidence of rapid spread and while it has features of immune escape, it is currently not a variant of concern,” it said.
The INSACOG under the federal ministry of health reports genomic surveillance of COVID-19 across India through genome sequencing of samples.
According to the INSACOG, a total of 150,710 Omicron samples have been sequenced and 127,697 samples have been analyzed.