Panaji, Dec 30 (PTI) Two of the passengers who arrived in Goa from the UK and were found to have COVID-19 are not carrying the new UK variant of the virus, Chief Minister Pramod Sawant said here on Wednesday.

A total of 37 travellers who had arrived from the UK have tested positive in the state alongwith 23 others who came in conact with them, he said.

"To date, the Goa government has sent 43 samples to the National Institute of Virology (NIV), Pune to ascertain if they are infected by the UK strain of the virus," he said.

Two reports came from the NIV and they were negative, he said.

Some 900 people arrived in Goa from the UK after December 9, as per government data.

The chief minister also appealed people and party organisers to follow COVID-19 guidelines during New Year celebrations.