The first case of Omicron sub-variant BA.5 in India has been detected in Telangana. An 80-year-old man in Hyderabad has tested positive for the sub-variant, as per Indian SARS-COV-2 Genomics Consortium (INSACOG). His genome sequencing results were received on Sunday.
The octogenarian, who is fully vaccinated, has no travel history and showed shown only mild clinical symptoms, according to INSACOG’s statement.
INSACOG has also confirmed that a South African traveler, a 40-year-old man, was reported positive for the BA.4 variant on arrival at Hyderabad airport. It was the first case of BA.4 Omicron sub-variant in India. All contacts of the two patients have been traced.
It was learnt that the South African man reached India on May 9 to give a lecture at a business school in Hyderabad. He tested positive for the BA.4 sub-variant on May 18.
After him, a 19-year-old girl in Tamil Nadu was found infected with the BA.4 sub-variant.
“BA.4 and BA.5 are sub-variants of the Omicron variant circulating globally. These were reported first from South Africa earlier this year and are now reported from several other countries. These variants have not been associated with disease severity or increased hospitalisation,” INSACOG said.
Senior officials of the Telangana Health department said samples of all cases in the State which test positive for coronavirus are sent for genome sequencing. The daily COVID-19 caseload this month has been between 25 and 50.