New Delhi: India’s effective reproduction number (R) for Covid — an indicator of how fast the infection is spreading — has reduced to 0.91 this week from 0.93 last week, although some metro cities where major festivals are about to kick off are showing an increasing trend.
In Kolkata, which is gearing up for its annual Durga Puja festivities, the R value has increased — to 1.06 this week from 1 last week.
R value or the effective reproduction number indicates how quickly an infection is spreading within a population. Essentially, it represents the average number of people who are likely to get the disease from one Covid patient and should be below 1 for the pandemic to come to an end.
This week, both Bengaluru and Mumbai breached this threshold, according to Sitabhra Sinha, a researcher at the Institute of Mathematical Sciences, Chennai, who has been tracking R since the beginning of the pandemic.
For Mumbai, R was 0.95 last week, which increased to 1.03 this week. Similarly, for Bengaluru, R increased from 0.99 to 1.05.
Meanwhile, Delhi too saw a rise in R, from 0.92 last week to 0.95 this week. Similarly, Pune’s R increased from 0.82 last week to 0.96 this week.
Chennai is the only major city where R decreased — from 1.05 to 0.95.
R value for states
Last week, Kerala’s R had increased to 1.04. This week, it is down to 0.85. Similarly, for Tamil Nadu, where R was over 1.02 for the last two weeks, it has gone down to 0.98.
Mizoram also had R over 1 last week, which has reduced to 0.94.
Maharashtra, Odisha and Andhra Pradesh, all saw their R values decreasing. For Maharashtra R reduced from 0.95 to 0.89 this week.
In Odisha, R is at 0.88 as opposed to 0.91 last week. For Andhra, R was at 0.92 last week, which reduced to 0.85 this week.
The states of Assam, Telangana and Karnataka have R values at 0.92, 0.94 and 0.94, respectively — the same as last week.
West Bengal’s R has remained the same for last three weeks at 0.96.
“Things can switch very quickly from good to bad and back again in smaller regions — because of the higher degree of variability when you are dealing with smaller populations — and so it’s difficult yet to say whether we are finally seeing the end-game,” Sinha told ThePrint.
(Edited by Paramita Ghosh)