Coronavirus UK news – Indian variant surge triggers demands to delay June 21 unlock as 10m get urgent 2nd vaccine dose

THE surge in Indian variant cases in the UK has triggered demands for the June 21 unlocking to be delayed.

Britain’s long-awaited ‘Freedom Day’ is now in serious doubt, with scientists and Boris Johnson‘s former adviser Dominic Cummings among those calling for it to be postponed.

Epidemiologist Professor Paul Hunter said Brits now face a nail-biting wait for data on exactly how serious the current outbreaks are and how many people end up dead or in hospital.

“The big question is how many people who are getting the Indian variant will end up requiring hospitalisation,” he told Radio 4’s Today programme.

“At the moment the hospitalisation rate doesn’t seem to be increasing yet although if this becomes much more common we will almost certainly see some increase,” he added.

“So it’s certainly a concern. I think Step 4 is in doubt in June now, but we really need to see what impact it has on severe disease before we can really be certain,” he went on to say.

It comes as 10 million over 50s and vulnerable people living in areas seeing a surge in Indian variant cases will be given urgent second vaccines.

Although the Indian variant may be up to 60 times more transmissible than even the Kent strain, as yet there’s no indication that vaccines do not work against it.

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