A look at the top Covid-19 developments of the day:

  1. The Indian Council of Medical Research on Monday said that contacts of coronavirus patients, unless identified as high-risk, do not need to be tested. Those with cough, fever, sore throat, loss of taste or smell, breathlessness and other respiratory symptoms should be tested, the medical body said in an advisory.
  2. The Centre on Monday said that so far only 5% to 10% of the cases of coronavirus have led to hospitalisation during the third wave of the pandemic in the country. The numbers were 20% to 23% during the Delta variant-driven second wave that peaked in May, the Centre said. “The situation is dynamic and evolving, therefore, the need for hospitalisation may also change rapidly,” Union Health Secretary Rajesh Bhushan wrote in a letter to state authorities.
  3. The Omicron variant of the virus has led to an almost eight-fold jump in daily infections over the last 10 days. India reported 1,79,723 new cases on Monday, taking the tally since the pandemic began in early 2020 to 3,57,07,727. With 146 deaths, the toll rose to 4,83,936.
  4. India began administering vaccine booster doses to front-line workers and elderly people on Monday.
  5. At a meeting of the Delhi Disaster Management Authority held on Monday, the officials noted that the trends in terms of rise in positivity rate of Covid-19 cases, hospitalisation and deaths were worrying, the Hindustan Times reported. Meanwhile, more than 300 Delhi Police personnel, including the public relations officer and Additional Commissioner Chinmoy Biswal have tested positive for the disease, ANI reported.
  6. After a review meeting, Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan decided to limit the number of people who can attend weddings and funerals in the state to a maximum of 50, ANI reported.
  7. The Tamil Nadu government issued a slew of directions for Jallikattu, a popular bull-taming sport held during the Pongal festival, The News Minute reported. Only 300 participants will be allowed and all of them, along with bull owners, audience, program coordinators and department officials, must produce negative Covid-19 test reports.
  8. The Telangana government increased checks on inter-state border areas amid a surge of infections, India Today reported. Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao asked people to be alert and follow the guidelines.
  9. A night curfew will come into effect in Tripura from Monday in a bid to curb the coronavirus spread, PTI reported. State Information and Cultural Affairs minister Sushanta Chowdhury said health experts have predicted that Tripura was likely to witness a surge of cases in January and February.
  10. Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison said on Monday that the country must “push through” the Omicron outbreak, Reuters reported. “Omicron is a gear change and we have to push through,” the prime minister told a press briefing in the capital Canberra. “You have got two choices here: you can push through or you can lock down.”