Asad Umar, Pakistan’s Minister for Planning, Development and Special Initiatives, on Friday said that a third wave of the Covid-19 pandemic has started in the country.
“Yes, there is no doubt that the third wave has started and basically, the phenomena that’s driving it is the spread of the UK strain,” The Express Tribune quoted Umar as saying while speaking to a local media outlet.
The Minister added that the uptick in cases was witnessed in districts where a large portion of the Pakistani British community lives.
“We then asked NIH to carry out genome sequencing, after which it became evident in northern Pakistan, including Islamabad,” said Umar, who also heads the country centre for Covid-19 response.
Later, he added, sequencing was carried out across the country, adding: “(We reached the conclusion that) the dominant strain right now is the UK strain.”
On Friday, Pakistan’s Covid-19 case tally crossed the 600,000 mark with 2,701 fresh infections.
There are a total of 566,492 recoveries, while the death toll stood at 13,377.