Highlights: India Ready For COVID-19 Vaccine Rollout, Says PM Modi

Latest News Highlights: India on Monday reported 16,311 new coronavirus cases which was 12 per cent lower than Sunday.

Highlights: India Ready For COVID-19 Vaccine Rollout, Says PM Modi

"India's vaccines are the most cost effective," PM Modi said.

New Delhi:

India is ready for the COVID-19 vaccine rollout, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said today at a meeting with chief ministers of all states to review the coronavirus situation and the preparedness for the inoculation drive set to begin on January 16.

Public representatives are not part of the 3 crore corona warriors and frontline workers to be vaccinated first, PM Modi said, adding that the cost of vaccination for these 3 crore people would be borne by the central government.

India on Monday reported 16,311 new coronavirus cases which was 12 per cent lower than Sunday. With the addition of fresh infections, the overall cases in the country have crossed 1.04 crore cases so far, including 1.5 lakh deaths.

The Supreme Court today asked the central government whether it would pause the implementation of three controversial farm laws at the core of massive farmer protests near Delhi, saying the situation had gone worse. "Tell us whether you will put the laws on hold or else we will do it. What's the ego here?" . The court's sharp remarks came during a hearing on petitions challenging the farm laws and the farmer agitation at the Delhi borders. 

"Each one of us we will responsible if anything goes wrong. We don't want any injuries or blood on our hands," Chief Justice of India SA Bobde said in sharp remarks.

The states of Delhi and Maharashtra have confirmed bird flu amid nationwide efforts to contain the spread. "Parbhani is the epicenter. About 800 poultry birds - all hens - died in the last two days. Their samples were given for testing. And now it is confirmed that the reason is bird flu," Deepak Madhukar Muglikar, District Collector, told NDTV. Parbhani is about 500 km from Maharashtra capital Mumbai.

Here are the Highlights:

Jan 12, 2021 05:51 (IST)
Coronavirus update: First consignment of Covishield vaccines reaches Pune airport
Jan 12, 2021 05:39 (IST)
Portuguese president tests positive for coronavirus
Portugal's President Marcelo Rebelo de Sousa has tested positive for coronavirus and cancelled all public engagements, his office announced late Monday just two weeks before a presidential election he is expected to win.

The 72-year-old head of state was "asymptomatic" and isolating in the presidential palace in Lisbon, his office said in a statement.

Last Wednesday, he had spent a few hours in "administrative isolation" after a member of his entourage tested positive, but the president then tested negative and had not been placed in quarantine because his contact with the person concerned had been considered "low risk".
Jan 12, 2021 04:42 (IST)
UK In Race Against Time To Roll Out COVID-19 Vaccines: Boris Johnson
UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson said on Monday Britain was in "a race against time" to roll out COVID-19 vaccines as deaths hit record highs and hospitals ran out of oxygen, and his top medical adviser said the pandemic's worst weeks were imminent.
Jan 12, 2021 04:03 (IST)
Bird flu update: Mumbai civic body issues guidelines
With samples of two crows from Mumbai testing positive for bird flu, the Mumbai civic body has issued a set of guidelines on reporting the death of birds and safe disposal of their remains.

The Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) has also appealed to citizens to contact its helpline 1916, if they notice the death of birds.

According to the Bhopal-based ICAR-National Institute of High Security Animal Diseases (NIHSAD), two crows from Mumbai have died due to bird flu, an official said earlier in the day.
Jan 12, 2021 03:37 (IST)
Coronavirus update: Turkey to start COVID-19 vaccination soon
Turkey will begin administering COVID-19 vaccines as of Thursday or Friday, President Tayyip Erdogan said, and will gradually lift restrictive measures as infections decline. Turkey has agreed to purchase 50 million doses of Sinovac's CoronaVac vaccine and has taken delivery of an initial 3 million doses

It has also agreed to procure 4.5 million doses of the vaccine developed by Pfizer and BioNTech, with an option to buy 30 million more later." Until a lasting solution is found for this problem, we must continue to lead our lives with restrictions," Erdogan said on Monday after a cabinet meeting in Ankara.
Jan 12, 2021 02:48 (IST)
Not Going To Achieve Herd Immunity This Year Despite Vaccines: World Health Organization
Despite vaccines against Covid-19 being rolled out in a number of countries, the World Health Organization warned Monday that herd immunity would not be achieved this year.
Jan 12, 2021 02:24 (IST)
Coronavirus update: New York speeds up Covid-19 vaccinations amid sluggish rollout
Faced with growing criticism over a sluggish rollout of the coronavirus vaccine, New York opened several large vaccination centers on Monday and relaxed criteria for getting a shot despite doses remaining insufficient.

Dozens of people queued patiently at a center in the Bronx, one of three pop-up sites in New York City that mirror hubs established elsewhere, including in Florida and New Jersey. "This is the turning point in our fight against Covid-19," Mayor Bill de Blasio wrote on Twitter.

Over 75s, police officers, firefighters, teachers and transport workers became eligible to get vaccinated after New York Governor Andrew Cuomo eased the state's strict guidelines following anger over discarded doses.
Jan 12, 2021 02:00 (IST)
Farmers protest update: Farmers threaten to ''gherao'' UP Raj Bhavan on Jan 23
A section of farmers protesting against the three central farm laws on Monday threatened to gherao Uttar Pradesh Raj Bhavan on January 23. Bhartiya Kisan Union spokesperson Dharmendra Malik in a statement said the agitating farmers would also burn copies of farm legislation on that day.

Mr Malik said the BKU executive committee, in a meeting at Ghazipur-UP gate border, also decided to observe January 18 as Mahila Kisan Divas (Women Farmers' Day) during which the women of villages would lead the ongoing protest against the government.
Jan 12, 2021 01:35 (IST)
Bird Flu update: Goa bans entry of poultry from neighbouring states
Amid the emergence of bird flu cases in several states in the country, the Goa government has banned the entry of poultry from neighboring states as a precautionary measure.

Goa Chief Minister Pramod Sawant said: "Orders have been issued to ban the transportation of poultry from Maharashtra and Karnataka into Goa. Officials are instructed to ensure barring the entry of poultry from the neighbouring states."
Jan 12, 2021 00:31 (IST)
WHO says it was notified of new COVID-19 variant found in Japan
The World Health Organization said it had been notified by Japan of a new variant of the coronavirus discovered there. Japan's health ministry said on Sunday it had detected a new coronavirus variant in four travellers from Brazil's Amazonas state.

The variant featured 12 mutations, including one also found in highly infections variants discovered in England and South Africa.
Jan 11, 2021 23:17 (IST)
Central team expresses satisfaction over Kerala's COVID-19 management
 The central team, which was deputed to support public health interventions for COVID-19 management in Kerala, on Monday held talks with the state health minister and expressed satisfaction over the steps taken by the government to tackle the situation.

A team, headed by the Director of the National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) Dr S K Singh, has been deputed after around 40,000 new cases were logged in the state in the first week of January, and around 5,000 new cases are added daily to the state's COVID-19 tally.

Jan 11, 2021 22:07 (IST)
Democrats Introduce House Resolution To Impeach Donald Trump
Democrats have introduced a House resolution asking US Vice President Mike Pence to impeach Donald Trump, news agency AFP has reported.
Jan 11, 2021 21:52 (IST)
AAP MLA Somnath Bharti Arrested In UP For His Remarks, Ink Thrown At Him
Aam Aadmi Party MLA Somnath Bharti on Monday had ink thrown at him in Uttar Pradesh's Rae Bareli and was arrested later for allegedly making objectionable remarks.

He was arrested for criminal intimidation and promoting enmity between groups, police said, following remarks allegedly referring to Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath and the state's hospitals.

Minutes earlier, a youth threw ink at the Delhi MLA when he was coming out of a guest house.

Superintendent of Police (of Rae Bareli) Shlok Kumar said, "Ink was thrown on the AAP MLA, and the matter is being probed."
Jan 11, 2021 21:00 (IST)
5.1 Intensity Earthquake Hits J&K's Katra
An earthquake of magnitude 5.1 was reported near Katra in Jammu and Kashmir on Monday evening, according to India's National Center for Seismology.

The epicentre of the earthquake was 63 km northeast (NE) of Katra, the agency said. The earthquake struck at 7:32 PM at a depth of 5 km from the surface.
Jan 11, 2021 20:01 (IST)
PM Modi Should Take COVID-19 Vaccine First To Allay Doubts: NCP Spokesperson

Prime Minister Narendra Modi should get himself inoculated first to allay people's concerns about the upcoming COVID-19 vaccination drive, Maharashtra Minister and Nationalist Congress Party spokesperson Nawab Malik said on Monday.

Nawab Malik made the comments in a video message.

The nationwide COVID-19 vaccination drive will begin on January 16.

The programme has been announced to vaccinate frontline warriors, healthcare workers and police first. But people have some doubts about it, Mr Malik said, urging PM Modi to get himself inoculated first.
Jan 11, 2021 19:40 (IST)
Implement Covid Vaccination Drive Successfully: Maharashtra Chief Minister To Officials

The COVID-19 vaccination drive will begin from January 16 and it should be implemented in Maharashtra successfully, Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray said on Monday.

According to an official statement, Mr Thackeray said all the government machineries should coordinate with each other to carry out the vaccination as per the Centre's guidelines.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday informed chief ministers of states about the vaccination programme, after which Thackeray held a meeting with the state's health department and task force members, the statement said.
Jan 11, 2021 19:08 (IST)
BioNtech Boosts 2021 Vaccine Supply Forecast To 2 Billion Doses: Company

German company BioNTech, which developed the first coronavirus vaccine approved in the West, said Monday it expects to produce 2 billion doses in 2021, up from the previous forecast of 1.3 billion doses.

"We now believe that we can potentially deliver approximately 2 billion doses in total by the end of 2021, which incorporates the updated 6-dose label," said the company, referring to the additional dose that could be extracted from each vial of the vaccine.
Jan 11, 2021 18:24 (IST)
Supreme Court To Deliver Its Order On Farm Laws Tomorrow
Jan 11, 2021 17:26 (IST)
Centre To Bear Expenses For First Phase Vaccination Of 3 Crore Frontline Workers: PM Modi
Jan 11, 2021 17:17 (IST)
We Aim To Vaccinate 30 Crore People In The Next Few Months: PM Modi
Jan 11, 2021 17:06 (IST)
Satisfied That We Worked Together During Covid Crisis: PM Modi
Jan 11, 2021 16:57 (IST)
PM Modi Interacts With Chief Ministers About Covid Vaccination

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday interacted with chief ministers of all states to discuss the COVID-19 situation and the vaccination roll-out in the country on January 16.

This is PM Modi's first interaction with chief ministers following the recent approval of two coronavirus vaccines for restricted emergency use by India's drug regulator.
Jan 11, 2021 16:33 (IST)
Serum Institute Of India Receives Purchase Order From Government: Officials
Jan 11, 2021 15:41 (IST)
China reports biggest daily COVID-19 case jump in over 5 months

China saw its biggest daily increase in COVID-19 cases in over five months, the country's health authority said on Monday, as new infections in Hebei province surrounding Beijing continued to rise. 

A county in northeastern Heilongjiang province on Monday moved into lockdown after reporting new coronavirus infections, state television also reported separately. 

Hebei accounted for 82 of the 85 new local infections reported on January 10, the National Health Commission (NHC) said in a statement, with Liaoning province also reporting two new cases and Beijing reporting one new case. 

Jan 11, 2021 15:12 (IST)
Number of fresh COVID-19 fatalities below 170 in India after 229 days

A declining number of fresh COVID-19 cases and a high rate of recovery have resulted in a continuous fall in the country's active caseload, which accounts for only 2.13 per cent of the total infections, the health ministry said on Monday.

The number of daily new fatalities has also declined substantially in the country. On Monday, less than 170 such deaths were recorded after 229 days, the ministry said.

"Declining new cases and high rate of recovery have in tandem resulted in continuous fall in the country''s active caseload on a sustained basis," the ministry said.

India's total active caseload has fallen to 2.25 lakh, which accounts for just 2.13 per cent of the total number of coronavirus cases in the country. A total of 16,959 COVID-19 patients have recovered in a span of 24 hours. This has led to a net decline of 809 from the active caseload, the ministry said.
Jan 11, 2021 14:44 (IST)
1.5 Million People Vaccinated Globally With Sputnik V: Russia

Russia announced Monday that 1.5 million people around the world had received its Sputnik V coronavirus vaccine as part of an initiative Kremlin critics have described as a geopolitical push. Read Here
Jan 11, 2021 14:01 (IST)
Dehi Bird flu news Updates: New Delhi Municipal Council forms rapid response team to conduct field inspection

The New Delhi Municipal Council (NDMC) on Monday formed a rapid response team to conduct field inspection for examining various birds in its areas in the wake of a bird flu outbreak in the national capital. 

"In the wake of avian influenza (bird flu), a rapid response team has been formed to carry out the field inspection to examine various birds in NDMC area especially chickens, ducks and other migratory birds. The inspection report has been sought on weekly basis," said Ramesh Kumar, Health Office, NDMC. 

Delhi on Monday confirmed bird flu cases after eight samples sent to a Bhopal-based laboratory tested positive for avian influenza. All eight samples -- four from a park in Mayur Vihar Phase 3, three from Sanjay Lake and one from Dwarka -- have been found positive for avian influenza, Dr Rakesh Singh from the animal husbandry unit of the Development Department said.
Jan 11, 2021 13:46 (IST)
Thailand reports 249 new COVID-19 cases

Thailand on Monday reported 249 new COVID-19 cases, including a nine-month-old infant, according to the Center for the COVID-19 Situation Administration (CCSA).

Of the new cases, 224 were local infections while 25 others were those in quarantine upon arrival from abroad, CCSA spokesman Taweesin Visanuyothin told a daily press conference.

The case of the nine-month-old was reported in Samut Sakhon province, where the latest outbreak was first detected in mid-December and now has confirmed more than 3,000 cases, Taweesin said.
Jan 11, 2021 13:27 (IST)
UK will have offered 15 million COVID shots by mid-February, minister says

Britain will have offered COVID-19 vaccines to those in the top four priority categories - about 15 million people - by the middle of next month as it ramps up rollout of the shots, the minister responsible for the programme said on Monday. 

Having become the first country to approve vaccines developed by Pfizer-BioNTech and by Oxford-AstraZeneca, Britain will open seven large-scale vaccination centres as part of a plan for a mass rollout of COVID-19 shots. 

"The vaccinations are really beginning to ramp up, 200,000 a day, we've done an incredible job this past week," minister Nadhim Zahawi told Sky News, saying they would offer shots to those in the highest risk levels, the eldest and frontline health workers, by the middle of February
Jan 11, 2021 13:01 (IST)
People shouldn't hesitate to get vaccinated, listen to scientists: Delhi's first COVID-19 patient

Days ahead of the nationwide COVID-19 vaccination roll-out, the city's first coronavirus patient urged people on Monday to get immunised without hesitation and listen to the scientific community, and not get swayed in by naysayers or those "spreading misconception" about it.

Rohit Datta, businessman and resident of Delhi's Mayur Vihar, who was the first person to be diagnosed with coronavirus infection on March 1, said "it feels surreal".

"Till a few months ago, we were struggling, people were dying in large numbers and fear of an unknown virus was at its peak. But our doctors, nurses and other healthcare workers fought a tough battle in 2020. And the first dose is rightfully to be given to all those corona warriors," he said.

Jan 11, 2021 12:40 (IST)
Four passengers on Air India's London-Delhi flight test positive for COVID-19

Four passengers travelling on Air India's London-Delhi flight tested positive for COVID-19 on arrival, a top official of Genestrings Diagnostic Centre said on Monday. 

Genestrings runs a lab at the Delhi airport to test incoming passengers for COVID-19. All flights connecting the UK and India were suspended from December 23 to January 7 by the central government as a new variant of coronavirus emerged in that country. Air India's AI162 flight landed at the Delhi airport at 10.30 pm on Sunday. 

"All testing completed within three hours and passengers released within 7.5 hours, even with positive cases," Gauri Agarwal, the founder of Genestrings Diagnostic Centre, said. "There were total 186 passengers on AI162 London-Delhi flight. Four of them have tested positive for COVID-19," she added.
Jan 11, 2021 12:23 (IST)
Puducherry logs 22 new COVID-19 cases, overall tally up to 38,478

The union territory of Puducherry added 22 new coronavirus cases during the last 24 hours pushing the overall infection tally to 38,478, a top Health department official said on Monday. 

No fresh fatality was reported from any of the four regions-Puducherry, Karaikal, Mahe and Yanam- and the deaths remained at 638, Director of Health and Family Welfare S Mohan Kumar said in a release. 

The 22 fresh cases were identified at the end of the examination of 2,063 samples, he added.
Jan 11, 2021 11:53 (IST)
WHO Team Probing Covid Origin To Visit China On Thursday

Ten World Health Organization scientists will visit China from Thursday to probe the origins of Covid-19, authorities said, more than a year after the pandemic began and amid accusations Beijing delayed the investigation. Read Here
Jan 11, 2021 11:42 (IST)
Malaysia buys additional 12.2 million doses of Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine

Malaysia on Monday signed a deal to buy an additional 12.2 million doses of a COVID-19 vaccine manufactured by U.S and German drugmakers Pfizer and BioNTech, the health ministry said in a statement

The deal brings the total amount of the Pfizer vaccines procured by Malaysia to 25 million doses, enough to cover 39% of its population, the ministry said.
Jan 11, 2021 11:11 (IST)
Nearly 200 birds found dead in Dehradun, Rishikesh

Amid an avian influenza scare in several states, nearly 200 birds, mostly crows, have been found dead in Uttarakhand's Dehradun and Rishikesh, officials said on Monday.

A total of 165 birds were found dead in different parts of Dehradun on Sunday, including 121 crows in the Bhandari Bagh area only.

There were 162 crows, two pigeons and an eagle among the dead birds found in Dehradun, Divisional Forest Officer (DFO) Rajiv Dhiman said.

Chief Wildlife Warden JS Suhag said the samples of the dead birds have been sent to the Indian Veterinary Research Institute in Bareilly to ascertain the cause of their death.

More than 30 birds were found dead at different places in and around Rishikesh, triggering a bird-flu scare in the town.
Jan 11, 2021 10:38 (IST)
Farmers protest updates: Delhi borders continue to remain closed, traffic diverted

The Delhi Police on Monday informed that Chilla and Ghazipur borders are closed for traffic coming from Noida and Ghaziabad to the national capital due to ongoing farmer protests.

People have been advised to take alternate routes via Anand Vihar, Delhi-Noida Direct Flyway, Bhopra and Loni borders.

Besides this, the Delhi-Haryana borders at Singhu, Auchandi, Piau Maniyari, Saboli and Mangesh have also been closed.

Jan 11, 2021 10:17 (IST)
Uttar Pradesh government to conduct final dry run for COVID-19 vaccination at 1,500 centres today

Gearing up for the COVID-19 vaccine rollout in the country, Uttar Pradesh will conduct the third dry run of vaccination at 1,500 centres across the state on Monday.

As per an official statement from the Uttar Pradesh government, this will the final mock drill to test all preparations for the vaccination drive.

The World Health Organisation (WHO) has praised the contact tracing done by the Uttar Pradesh government to control the spread of COVID-19 infection. "With the efforts made by the state government, the Coronavirus cases in the state are reducing," it said.
Jan 11, 2021 10:04 (IST)
Coronavirus Latest News Update: Pacific's Micronesia records first Covid-19 case

The remote Pacific nation of Micronesia recorded its first case of Covid-19 on Monday, ending its run as one of the few places on Earth without the coronavirus.

President David Panuelo acknowledged the development was "alarming" for the country's 100,000 inhabitants but said the case had been contained at the border.

"For this reason, citizens across the nation should remain calm," he said in a televised address.

"Do not panic because the situation is contained."

President Panuelo said the positive test came from a crewman on a government ship "Chief Mailo", which had been in the Philippines undergoing repairs.

Jan 11, 2021 09:52 (IST)
Over 30 birds found dead in Rishikesh

Over 30 birds have been found dead at different places in and around Rishikesh creating a bird flu scare in the town.

Twenty-eight crows and one pigeon were found dead in AIIMS, Rishikesh premises, one death was reported from Bees Bigha locality and two from Raiwala station, government veterinary officer Rajesh Raturi said.

Samples of the birds have been collected and sent to the forest department for further action, he said.

Confirming the deaths, Rishikesh Municipal Commissioner Narendra Singh Quiriyal said a temporary ban on sale of bird meat can also be imposed in public interest if necessary. 
Jan 11, 2021 09:35 (IST)
Coroavirus News: Elon Musk's girlfriend, singer Grimes contracts COVID-19

Elon Musk's girlfriend and Canadian musician Grimes has recently revealed that she has contracted COVID-19. According to Page Six, Grimes said that she has "finally," caught COVID-19 and it has been a trippy experience for her. "Finally got Covid but weirdly enjoying the Dayquil fever dream 2021," she announced as she wrote in her Instagram stories.

Jan 11, 2021 09:21 (IST)
Bird flu situation In Maharashtra
Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray to chair a meeting to review the bird flu situation in the state, today.
Jan 11, 2021 08:47 (IST)
New Covid Variant Found In Travellers From Brazil: Japan
A new coronavirus variant has been detected in four travellers from Brazil's Amazonas state, Japan's Health Ministry said on Sunday, in the latest instance the pandemic virus is evolving. Read Here
Jan 11, 2021 08:22 (IST)
COVID-19 News Updated: New coronavirus strain first seen in Britain confirmed in Mexico

The new variant of the coronavirus first detected in Britain has been confirmed in northern Mexico, health officials said on Sunday, adding a new layer of concern to an already severe national outbreak.

The confirmation of the especially contagious new variant of the virus marks the first time it has been found in Mexico, home to the pandemic's forth-highest death toll globally.

A 56-year-old British man who flew on Dec. 29 from Mexico City to the city of Matamoros, just south of the U.S.-Mexico border, tested positive for the new strain, both state and national health officials said on Sunday.

The man arrived to the Mexican capital a day earlier on a flight from Amsterdam, said Jose Luis Alomia, the head of epidemiology for the national health ministry, at a regular government news conference.
Jan 11, 2021 08:00 (IST)
Joe Biden To Receive Second COVID-19 Vaccine Dose On Monday

US President-elect Joe Biden will receive his second dose of the Covid-19 vaccine on Monday, his office announced, three weeks after his first injection was broadcast live on TV to boost public confidence in the jab. Read Here
Jan 11, 2021 07:36 (IST)
Israel starts Covid-19 vaccination for all educational workers

Israel has started COVID-19 vaccination for all teachers and other educational workers, the Ministry of Education said Sunday.

The Israeli education system has more than 203,000 employees, who have daily contact with more than 2.4 million pupils when there is no lockdown.

In the first phase, vaccination will go to the teachers who work as usual during the ongoing full lockdown in the country.

All other teachers and staff members, such as secretaries, janitors and consultants, will be later vaccinated at medical centers across the country.
Jan 11, 2021 06:59 (IST)
Coronavirus update: Production of Sputnik V vaccine to begin in Brazil on January 15
Brazil will begin manufacturing the Russian-developed Sputnik V vaccine against the coronavirus disease on January 15, according to the vaccine's Twitter account.

"Brazil will start production of Sputnik V on January 15," the account said.

Sputnik V, developed by the Gamaleya Research Institute of Epidemiology and Microbiology, was registered by the Russian Health Ministry on August 11, becoming the first registered vaccine against COVID-19 in the world.
Jan 11, 2021 06:40 (IST)
Russia Confirms First Case Of New UK Coronavirus Strain
Moscow on Sunday confirmed its first case of the new UK coronavirus strain, despite an earlier decision by officials to suspend flights from Britain to stop the mutation reaching Russia.
Jan 11, 2021 06:29 (IST)
Coronavirus live update: German virus deaths top 40,000
The total number of Germany's coronavirus deaths crosses 40,000 Sunday, as Chancellor Angela Merkel warns that worse is to come.

In her weekly video message Saturday, Merkel said the full impact of socialising over the Christmas and New Year's period was yet to show up in the statistics.
Jan 11, 2021 05:57 (IST)
Coronavirus update: "Every minute counts," says France as it detects UK variant
French authorities said they were racing to contain the more infectious variant of COVID-19 first found in Britain, which has now been detected in France's Mediterranean port of Marseille and in the Alps.

Marseille Mayor Benoit Payan said seven to eight people had tested positive for the new variant in the city, while tests were underway on 30 others who may also have been exposed to it.

"Right now, every minute counts in terms of preventing the spread of this English variant," Payan said. The local health authority in the Hautes-Alpes region, home to many ski resorts which attract British visitors, said the variant had also been discovered there.