London: British Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Saturday expressed “serious concern” over cases of the Delta Covid variant rising in the country.
This comes as sources suggest that England’s remaining lockdown curbs will be extended for another month seeing the surge in infections of Delta variant.
The British government’s efforts in successful inoculation drive, deemed one of the world’s fastest rollouts, had led to hopes of normalcy returning to the citizens’ lives. However, the rising cases of Delta variant seem to have dashed the plans to lift remaining restrictions.
“It’s clear that the variant which was first detected in India is more transmissible and it’s also true that the cases are going up, and that the levels of hospitalisation are going up,” Prime Minister Johnson told Sky News.
Johnson stated that officials continue to study the data before reaching a final decision, however, he was less optimistic about the situation as compared to the end of May.
“Now, we don’t know exactly to what extent that is going to feed through into extra mortality, but clearly it’s a matter of serious, serious concern.”
The British Prime Minister suggested that the government would not reimpose any previous restrictions.
As of now, the government’s roadmap is expected to see all legal limits on social contact to be removed on June 21. PM Johnson is scheduled to announce on Monday whether the curbs over social contact will end as set out under a planned ‘roadmap’.
The last part of completely lifting the lockdown in England would see nightclubs reopen, and an end to restrictions on performances, weddings and other life events.
The Public Health England (PHE) had informed that the Delta variant now accounts for nine in 10 coronavirus cases in the UK.
It is roughly 60 percent more transmissible than the Alpha, or Kent, variant, it added.
As of Saturday, the UK’s overall Covid infection tally and death toll stood at 4,566,891 and 128,148, respectively.
Meanwhile, more than 29 million people in the UK have been administered both doses of a Covid vaccine which accounts for 55.4 percent of the country’s total adult population – a feat that is helping the country register low mortality with respect to deaths caused by Coronavirus.
(With Agency Inputs)