DailyMail on Wednesday published a story on 'Nepal variant' being a threat


The Ministry of Health and Population on Thursday refuted the news of emergence of the 'Nepal variant' of coronavirus as claimed by a UK tabloid, while declaring that no such variant exists.

British paper DailyMail, on Wednesday had published a story that claimed a new mutant strain of the coronavirus that originated in Nepal, one that is resistant to vaccines, has apparently spread to Europe. It further went on to say that the 'Nepal Variant' is a threat to the UK citizens' holiday plans.

Responding to the same, the Health Ministry issued a press release Thursday, categorically denying the existence of any such variant in Nepal. "Among the many variants of concerns as declared by the World Health Organisation (WHO), Alfa and Delta are the only known active strains in Nepal," the ministry said, adding, "No other variant has been known to be active in the country."

Additionally, it reiterated that there has been no discovery of any new 'Nepal Variant' as coined by some international media reports.

The ministry has also urged all to not spread such disinformation without acquiring adequate information and verification from relevant agencies.

The WHO office in Nepal also took to the social media and reassured that there has not been any discovery as such.

"WHO is not aware of any new variant of SARS-CoV-2 being detected in Nepal," WHONepal wrote in its Twitter handle.

It also reemphasized that, Delta (B.1.617.2) is the predominant variant currently in circulation in Nepal.

The report had gained widespread attention in Nepal after the BBC posted a link of the news on its Twitter handle and the flow of responses to the tweet got 'Nepal Variant' trending on the microblogging site throughout the day.

By the time this update was uploaded, the post has been quoted 458 times, re-tweeted over a hundred times while it has received close to 500 comments, most of them slamming the tabloid for spreading disinformation during such critical times.

Compiled by Sandeep Sen