In April and May, India struggled with the second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic with more than 3,00,000 daily new cases.
WHO said that available findings for lineages B.1.617.1 and B.1.617.2 were initially used to designate B.1.617 a global Variant of Concern (VOC) on May 11 this year.
WHO has declared B.1.617 as a "variant of concern" and the update noted that this variant has "increased transmissibility" and disease severity is "under investigation".
PM Modi reviews Covid-19 situation, orders immediate audit of installation, operation of ventilators
Modi also directed that a distribution plan for ensuring oxygen supply in rural areas should be worked out, including through provision of oxygen concentrators.
According to it, B.1.617 sub-lineages appear to have higher rates of transmission, including observed rapid increases in prevalence in multiple countries.
This will ensure primary healthcare delivery at the citizen's doorstep, limiting human exposure to Covid-congested or Covid-prone areas through aerial delivery.
The B.1.617.2, classified as a Variant Under Investigation (VUI) on April 28, is now known as VOC-21APR-02 after it was found to be at least as transmissible as the so-called Kent variant.
India's Permanent Representative to the UN Ambassador T S Tirumurti replied to Guterres's tweet saying that India deeply appreciates "your sentiments and solidarity at this juncture.
India's coronavirus death toll breaches 2 lakh mark, reports record single-day spike of 3,60,960 cases
Registering a steady increase, the active cases have risen to 29,78,709, comprising 16.55% of the total infections, while the national COVID-19 recovery rate has further dropped to 82.33%.