The Centre’s concern came after various districts, particularly in Maharashtra, were found sending samples picked up serially and not randomly, often resulting in the same profile from a particular cluster, officials said.
Various mutations have been found in many countries, including the UK (17 mutations), Brazil (17 mutations), and South Africa (12 mutations). Till Thursday, 13,614 whole genome sequencing samples have been processed at the 10 designated labs. Of these, 1,189 have tested positive for variants of concern for SARS-COV-2 in India. This includes 1,109 samples with UK variants; 79 samples with South African variant and one sample with the Brazil variant. These variants have higher transmissibility.
Besides, the double mutation is another variant and has been found in countries like Australia, Belgium, Germany, Ireland, Namibia, New Zealand, Singapore, the UK and the US. However, higher transmissibility of this variant has not been established as yet. While many states have raised concerns that the spike in cases is due to mutations, the Indian SARS-CoV-2 Genomics Consortium is yet to arrive at a conclusion.