Saturday, 25 June, 2022
HomeHealthAt 0.98, India's R value drops below 1 for the first time...

At 0.98, India’s R value drops below 1 for the first time during second Covid wave

The R value, which indicates how quickly Covid infection is spreading, depends on how states are doing. It could increase if Covid cases rise in high-burden states.

Text Size:

New Delhi: India’s effective reproduction number (R) for Covid — an indicator of how fast the infection is spreading — has dropped to below 1 for the first time since February.

According to Sitabhra Sinha, a researcher at the Institute of Mathematical Sciences in Chennai, the value of R fell to 0.98 around 11 May.

“The value is hovering close to one, so if some states with high R end up having much higher number of active cases, it can yet climb back to more than one,” Sinha told ThePrint.

Graphic by Ramandeep Kaur | ThePrint
Graphic by Ramandeep Kaur | ThePrint

India’s drop in R is primarily because Maharashtra’s lockdown drove its R to below 1.

Karnataka, which has now overtaken Maharashtra in terms of the the number of active cases saw its R decrease to 1.04 from 1.25 last week.

Several of the states with the highest number of active cases now have R below 1.

However, it is important to note that the calculation of R is dependent on the number of active cases being reported from the country.


Graphic by Ramandeep Kaur | ThePrint
Graphic by Ramandeep Kaur | ThePrint

Since the beginning of the pandemic, India’s R values have closely mirrored those of Maharashtra — since the state has had the highest burden of cases at most times over the course of the pandemic.

Over the last several weeks, Maharashtra’s R fell to below 1 — which helped bring down the active cases across the country to some extent.

As of this week, the state’s R is at 0.92.

Other states

Graphic by Ramandeep Kaur | ThePrint
Graphic by Ramandeep Kaur | ThePrint

Meanwhile, Tamil Nadu currently has the highest R of 1.29, increasing from 1.11 last week. This shows that the Covid curve continues to rise in the state.

Similarly, Punjab too saw a rise in the Covid curve, from just over 1 last week to 1.27 this week — the second highest among the states with highest burden of active cases.

All other states with the highest number of active cases saw a drop in their R values.

Delhi, which has seen its active cases decrease, saw the R value fall to 0.68 from nearly 1 last week.

The states of Bihar, Uttar Pradesh, Telangana, Gujarat, Haryana, Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh all reported R values below 1.

However, for Gujarat and Telangana, the number of daily tests conducted has drastically reduced too, indicating that these state may be missing out on cases.

Major cities

Graphic by Ramandeep Kaur | ThePrint
Graphic by Ramandeep Kaur | ThePrint

Chennai is currently the only city which has R significantly over 1 — at 1.27. All other cities have R below 1.

For Pune, R reduced from last week’s 1.07 to less than 1 this week. Mumbai, which already had R at 0.86 last week saw a further decrease in its R to 0.60 this week.

Both Kolkata and Bengaluru had R at 1.19 last week. For both cities, R is close to 1 this week.

(Edited by Manasa Mohan)

Subscribe to our channels on YouTube & Telegram

Why news media is in crisis & How you can fix it

India needs free, fair, non-hyphenated and questioning journalism even more as it faces multiple crises.

But the news media is in a crisis of its own. There have been brutal layoffs and pay-cuts. The best of journalism is shrinking, yielding to crude prime-time spectacle.

ThePrint has the finest young reporters, columnists and editors working for it. Sustaining journalism of this quality needs smart and thinking people like you to pay for it. Whether you live in India or overseas, you can do it here.

Support Our Journalism

Most Popular