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Omicron BA4, BA5 detected in Tamil Nadu: At least 4 mutant COVID variants circulating, warns health min

Omicron BA4 variant while eight people have been diagnosed with BA5 variant. All of them are isolated. We are closely monitoring these 12 people.

They are all doing fine," the health minister said- adding, “those secondary contacts who came in contact with the primary contacts were identified and are being monitored." “We have sent about 150 samples collected from people to the laboratory in Hyderabad and results have reached us directly from the lab," he said.  The health minister said that the 12 individuals (who have been detected with the new variants) were doing well and Health department Principal Secretary J Radhakrishnan telephoned them and enquired about their health condition. "The Central government will officially announce the detection of these new variants." he said. To a query, Subramanian said all the 12 people hail from Chennai and neighbouring districts.

The minister clarified that apart from the 12 samples, the remaining samples (150) were detected to be of BA1 and BA2 variants. Subramanian said, the emergence of COVID-19 clusters were seen in some residential localities in Chennai, Chengalpet, Kancheepuram, Tiruvallur districts. Referring to the COVID surge in IIT-Madras, Sathya Sai University, Poonamallee, he said the virus spread in these areas was largely 'contained'.

Meanwhile, 23 COVID-19 positive cases were reported in the campus of Anna University and till Saturday 196 COVID-19 cases were reported in the campus of VIT, Kilambakkam. "All those tested positive have been isolated and are being monitored by health officials. Those who came in contact with them have also been isolated and monitored," he said.

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