The World Health Organization has said it is monitoring a new coronavirus variant known as "Mu", which was first identified in Colombia in January.
Mu, known scientifically as B.1.621, has been classified as a "variant of interest", the global health body said Tuesday in its weekly pandemic bulletin.
The WHO said the variant has mutations that indicate a risk of resistance to vaccines and stressed that further studies were needed to better understand it.
Here are the updates on coronavirus (COVID-19) cases:
This is a "new business model", the former state minister said, speaking to reporters. Spokespersons of the Shiv Sena, which is a part of the coalition government in the state, were not available for comment on Mr Shelar's claims.
All fully-vaccinated passengers entering Assam with their vaccination certificate have been exempted from mandatory testing upon arrival, as per a notification issued by the state on Wednesday, reported news agency ANI.
"All incoming passengers, who have been vaccinated with two doses of Covid-19 vaccines and possess such certificate, on the production of the same in front of screening authority, shall be exempted from mandatory testing on arrival at airports, railway stations, road border points etc," the notification read.
Kerala on Wednesday reported 32,803 new COVID-19 cases and 173 deaths which pushed the total infection count to 40,90,036 and the fatalities to 20,961.
The test positivity rate (TPR) was found to be 18.76 per cent after testing of 1,74,854 samples in the last 24 hours, according to a state government release.
With this, 3,17,27,535 samples have been tested till now, it said.
As many as 1 in 7 children may have symptoms linked to the coronavirus months after testing positive for COVID-19, the authors of an English study on long COVID-19 in adolescents said on Wednesday.
Children rarely become severely ill with COVID-19 but they can suffer lingering symptoms, and the study is one of the largest of its kind on how common so-called long COVID is in the age group.
In a telephonic conversation with health ministers of Karnataka and Tamil Nadu, Union Minister of Health and Family Welfare, Mansukh Mandaviya on Wednesday reviewed the COVID-19 situation in these states.
Due to the rising cases in Kerala, the Minister discussed matters related to COVID-19 management in those areas of the states of Karnataka and Tamil Nadu, which border Kerala, according to an official release.
Foreign nationals staying in Goa can now take COVID-19 vaccines after showing the passport, a state government official said on Wednesday, reported news agency PTI.
Goa Vaccination Nodal Officer Dr Anup Netravalkar told reporters that foreign nationals can either book a slot online through the CoWIN portal or visit vaccination centres to receive the jab.
The Assam government on Wednesday relaxed the restrictions imposed during the second wave of the Covid-19 pandemic as it reduced duration of the night curfew and allowed certain categories of students to attend physical classes from September six, reported news agency PTI.
Announcing the directives prepared by the Assam State Disaster Management Authority (ASDMA) in consultation with the health and education department, Health Minister Keshab Mahanta told a press conference here that all workplaces and government and private offices can now function as per usual working hours, but not beyond 8 pm.
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee Wednesday said the government is thinking whether children will be required to be vaccinated in view of the COVID third wave and assured that everyone in the state will be given their jabs.
If required the government will carry out inoculation programmes for children similar to the pulse polio drive, she said.
The Philippines crossed a grim milestone as COVID-19 caseload topped 2 million on Wednesday.
The number of COVID-19 cases in the Southeast Asian country surged to 2,003,955 after the Department of Health (DOH) reported 14,216 new daily infections on Wednesday.
The Lingaraj Temple in Bhubaneswar reopened on Wednesday after five months, for fully vaccinated devotees, reported news agency ANI.
According to the guidelines issued by Lingaraj temple trust, only those devotees who have taken both doses of the COVID-19 vaccine will be allowed to enter the temple.
Odisha's COVID-19 tally rose to 10,08,469 on Wednesday as 719 more people, including 125 children, tested positive for the infection, a health official said.
An eight-year-old girl from Jharsuguda was among 53 more patients who succumbed to the infection, taking the state''s coronavirus death toll to 8,022, he said.
As many as 32 students have tested positive for COVID-19 in a college in Karnataka's Kolar KGF College of Dental Sciences and Hospital, said Karnataka Health Minister Dr K Sudhakar on Wednesday.
"32 students are infected with COVID in a college in KGF nursing college. All of them are Kerala returnees. I will visit the college and take action against the college management," said the Minister.
He further said that the COVID-19 has been brought under control to 700-800 cases per day from as high as 50,000 cases per day while adding that the government has worked hard to mitigate the pandemic.
Adhering to COVID-19 protocols, schools in Telangana have reopened for all classes from Wednesday.
In view of the improved COVID-19 situation in the state, the state government has allowed all students to attend physical classes from September 1.
St. Anthony''s High School of Hyderabad has also reopened for classes 8 to 12. Students were seen enthusiastic as well as worried about their health over the resumption of physical classes.
Schools are also ensuring properly sanitisation and regular temperature check-ups of staff and students.
Delhi reopens schools from today for classes 9-12 after nearly 1.5 years amid strict safety protocol due to the pandemic. The decision could not be delayed any further, Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia said today, as "an entire generation would otherwise suffer a knowledge gap". The colleges, universities and coaching institutes are also reopening amid concern over a third Covid wave.
Vaccination of teachers, 50 per cent seating capacity in classrooms, lunch breaks in open area and the adherence to social distancing norms are some of the aspects being focussed as the state government tries to keep students and teachers safe.
Another 32,181 people in Britain have tested positive for COVID-19, bringing the total number of coronavirus cases in the country to 6,789,581, according to official figures released Tuesday.
The country also reported another 50 coronavirus-related deaths. The total number of coronavirus-related deaths in Britain now stands at 132,535. These figures only include the deaths of people who died within 28 days of their first positive test.
The latest data came as experts from the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) prepare to make a final decision on a vaccine booster campaign.
India recorded 41,96 fresh Covid cases in the last 24 hours, 35.6 per cent higher than yesterday (30,941), the government data this morning showed. The country also reported 460 Covid deaths today against yesterday's 350 casualties.
Google on Tuesday extended the option for its employees to work from home into next year due to the pandemic.
"I'm happy to say that a large number of offices globally are already open for business, and we are welcoming back tens of thousands of Googlers on a voluntary basis," Pichai said.
The US State Department has raised its travel advisory alert for Canada to a "level 3 - reconsider travel" status amid the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, it said in a statement on Tuesday.