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India’s R value drops to 0.92, but Mumbai, Chennai, Bengaluru still over 1

R value, which indicates how fast Covid-19 is spreading, registers a drop to 0.92 from last week's 0.98. Maharashtra and Kerala, states with high active caseloads, also register drop.

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New Delhi: India’s effective reproduction number (R) for Covid — a parameter that indicates how fast a disease is spreading — has further dropped to 0.92 from 0.98 since the last week, although several major cities continue to have R over 1.

R is the average number of people one sick person is likely to infect. R needs to be sustained below 1 for the epidemic to come to an end.

“The good news is that India’s R has continued to be less than 1 — as is the case with Kerala and Maharashtra, the two states having the highest number of active cases,” Sitabhra Sinha, a researcher at the Indian Institute of Mathematical Sciences in Chennai, told ThePrint.

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

Kerala’s R was as high as 1.21 around 7 September, which decreased to 0.97 last week. This declined further to 0.89 this week.

Maharashtra’s R declined from 1.0 last week to 0.97 this week.

Among the top 10 states with the highest number of active cases, Mizoram is among the few that saw a rise in its R value — to 1.10 this week from 1.01 last week. Similarly, for Tamil Nadu, the value rose to 1.02 this week from 1.

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

All other states have R below 1 and are showing declining trends.

West Bengal, which showed a small rise last week to 0.99 from 0.96, has seen its R fall back to 0.96.

Cities under watch

What is worrisome is that most major cities, apart from Delhi, have R over 1.0.

The highest R among cities is that of Chennai, where the metric rose to 1.11 from last week’s 0.99.

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

Similarly, Bengaluru, which had R at 0.98 last week saw a rise to 1.06. Kolkata’s R rose to 1.04 this week from 1.0, while that of Pune increased to 1.04 from 0.94 last week.

Mumbai’s R was already over 1 last week — it rose further to 1.09 this week, from 1.03.

However, for Delhi, the value decreased to 0.92 this week from 0.98.

(Edited by Paramita Ghosh)


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