Covid variant omicron shakes up smug world- The New Indian Express

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Just when the world thought it was safe to go back to a new normal, to exhale fear and inhale hope, a new variant crashed into the headlines. The new ‘variant of concern’ B.1.1.529 — now christened Omicron after the 15th letter of the Greek alphabet — discovered in South Africa has triggered a wave of fear.

It is said fear has no bottom. The appearance of Omicron led a trail of red across the financial markets. On Black Friday, a day when north America and other parts of the world celebrate discount shopping, investors bled value, losing trillions in gains painfully accumulated over weeks and months. In India, investors owning stocks lost over Rs 7 lakh crore in a single day as the Sensex tumbled 1,687 points and the Nifty 509 points sliding back to levels seen in August. Almost on cue, as if this was muscle memory, countries imposed travel restrictions — the phraseology of lockdowns and quarantine has reappeared like a…

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