No evidence of coronavirus being airborne, says ICMR’s top scientist

With the number of coronavirus cases in India now doubling in just over four days as the pandemic continues to spread the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) said Sunday that there was no evidence of the virus being airborne.

“There is no evidence of coronavirus being airborne,” Dr Raman Gangakhedkar, Head Scientist, (ICMR) said at the government’s daily briefing.

Coronavirus spreads primarily through droplets generated when an infected person coughs or sneezes, or through droplets of saliva or discharge from the nose.

Last month, the World Health Organization had said that there is not sufficient evidence to suggest that SARS-CoV-2 is airborne, except in a handful of medical contexts, such as when intubating an infected patient.

On Sunday, the number of coronavirus cases in India climbed to 3,374 and seventy nine people have lost their lives so far while 267 people have recovered, Lav Aggarwal, joint secretary, health ministry said at the briefing.

Aggarwal also said the Tablighi Jamaat event in Delhi last month contributed largely to the rapid rise in infections recently.

“Covid-19 cases doubled in 4.1 days presently…. had Tablighi Jamaat incident not happened it would have taken 7.4 days,” he said.

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